Passport Seva Review – Facilities And Services Being Provided By Them

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Information – Overview History

The passport act states, “for the issue of passports and travel documents, to regulate the departure from India of citizens of India and for other persons and matters incidental or ancillary thereto.”

It is pertinent to know that the passport is one of the most important documents for any individual. To acquire a passport, quite a few validations and checks need to be done.

It is only after those verifications are complete that a person is eligible to carry a passport.

The Indian Passport is ranked in the 84th position with an accumulated score of 58. This means 58 countries allow the Indian Passport holder to arrive at their respective soil without a visa and is then allowed to acquire one, on arrival.

The Passport in India is acquired through the Passport Seva Kendras or PSK. These PSKs are equipped to handle a large number of applicants. They are manned by trained staff and have all the technological wherewithal to serve the purpose of disbursing passport to eligible Claimants.

There are also a few rules that need to be remembered, the foremost being that Passports are not given for dual citizenship. This conforms to Article 9.

An extension to Article 9, Article 12 states that a passport holder has to surrender his or her passport after acquiring the citizenship of another country.

Three types of Passports are issued in India:

  • Ordinary passport
  • Official passport
  • Diplomatic passport

The passport, though a personal document of an individual can also be impounded or confiscated by the relevant authorities under the following circumstances:

  • If there is a wrongful possession of documents and the authorities are satisfied by the same
  • If there has been a willing disclosure or suppression of correct information
  • If there is a threat to the unity and integrity of the country or there is a possibility that granting a passport to an individual or individuals may lead to a deterioration of relations with a friendly country.
  • If it has been directed by the court of law or perchance it has been discovered that the holder is under travel restriction issued by a competent court of law
  • If there is a pending sentence against the holder of the passport
  • If the authorities find that there is a warrant of summoning is issued against the holder or a warrant of arrest
  • If it has been discovered that any condition about passport or the travel documents have been contravened
  • If there is a conviction against the passport holder by a court of law

Considering the sensitivity of the document, a passport is deemed to be an extremely document for verification. Many times a passport may be mentioned as one of the documents eligible to provide proof of residence.

However, falling short of confiscation, there may be restrictions put on individual passports based on the following circumstance:

  • The individual may be engaged in activities that are against the sovereignty   of the country
  • The presence of such an individual is against the wellbeing of the country and henceforth may be detrimental
  • That the presence of that individual may lead to a fall out in relationship with a friendly country
  • The individual may not be a citizen of the country
  • That the applicant till 5 years ago from the application of his or her passport was convicted as proven at a court of law.
  • That the individual has yet to pay back the cost of repatriation

All these rules are looked into minutely by the authorities because the passport of any country is indeed a symbol of that country and the person holding it has a certain responsibility.

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It is also imperative to remember that under Article 21, the constitution provides the citizen of the country the fundamental right to travel. So barring extraneous conditions or the conditions mentioned previously, the citizen is bound to be provided with a passport after due diligence has been carried out.

For such to happen, the applicant can either visit the Passport Seva Kendra or apply for one online.

With the advent of technology, the Government of India has enhanced the usability of online tools. This has made the application of passport easier and less time-consuming. One can now apply for a passport from the comfort of one’s house.

The Ministry of External Affairs or MEA is the sole authority to be issuing passports to individuals. It does so through a network of 77 Passport Seva Kendras or PSK and 190 Diplomatic missions and posts abroad.

The MEA has also collaborated with domestic IT Major Tata Consultancy Service or TCS whereby they would be providing and maintaining the process of verification of the passport as well as overseeing the technological tools used to issue one. The final verification, granting and issuance of the Passport will be in the hands of the Ministry of External Affairs.

This collaboration is a Public-Private Partnership which was created through a public competitive procurement process.

The process of getting a passport

Basic Requirement to acquire a passport

There are a few basic requirements to acquire a passport. These requirements have to be fulfilled to apply for one.

These are the documents that are required:

  • Proof of Birth
  • Identity Proof with a photograph
  • Proof of Residence
  • Proof of Nationality

Competent Authority

Please remember the officers manning the Passport Seva Kendra are simply supervising the entire process of verification. The final authority of the issue is the Ministry of External Affairs.

Procedure

After an application has been made, the applicant has to be present at the respective Passport Seva Kendra to present themselves in front of the verification officer.

Physical verification of the documents and the collection of biometrics will be done. The photograph too will be taken.

The Government is trying to further ease the processes to make the acquiring of Passport easier.

Appointments

An online appointment needs to be taken. The date and time will be provided to the applicant. This is done to lessen the congestion as well as avoid overwhelming the capacity of the Seva Kendra.

This process is based on an automated Queue Management System.

It is a fairly straightforward process:

  • Undergo the online registration
  • Then filling up
  • And finally submitting the online application form,
  • As an alternative, download e-form, fill up and upload the same at the Online Portal,
  • Now an appointment will be scheduled
  • And the last step would be
  • Visiting a Passport Seva Kendra (PSK) or a Post Office Passport Seva Kendra (POPSK) for the physical verification of the applicant.

As mentioned earlier, the concerned ministry is finding out ways to further ease the process. This will make it, even more, easer for the applicant to apply for the passport.

Payment

It needs to be remembered that no cash payment at the Passport Seva Kendra is allowed. The Government of India has made online payment mandatory. This can be made through the following processes:

  • Credit/Debit Card (MasterCard and Visa),
  • Internet Banking (State Bank of India (SBI) and Associate Banks only) and
  • SBI Bank Challan

Tatkal

Applicants applying under Tatkaal service need to pay only the fee as applicable under the Normal service while making Online Payment.

The balance fee as applicable for Tatkaal will be payable in cash at Passport Seva Kendra (PSK)/Passport Office, once Tatkaal application is accepted by Officials.

The Tatkal service is the only service where some payment by cash is allowed. However, it is easier to make online payments and avoid the long queues that usually appear for Tatkal passport services.

It is also to be noted that not all Post Office Seva Kendras have the facility to issue a passport under the Tatkal services.

Cancellation or Rescheduling of Appointments

It may so arise that the appointment has to be cancelled and rescheduled. It is the responsibility of the applicant to cancel and reschedule the same at the earliest since such a request will not be entertained thereafter.

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Also, an applicant is allowed cancellation and rescheduling of appointments of up to three times in a year. Beyond that, it is not permissible.

The Visit

On the given date and time visit the Passport Seva Kendra with the relevant documents, which have been mentioned earlier. Check out for the nearest Passport Seva Kendra or a Post Office Seva Kendra.

The applicant does not need to carry a photograph since it will be taken at the Passport Seva Kendra itself by the verification officer.

The Passport Seva Kendra

It needs to be mentioned that the Passport Seva Kendras are facilities with world-class ambience and services. Several amenities are provided to the waiting public.

Some of them are:

  • Self-Service Kiosks
  • Photocopying booths
  • food and beverage facilities stand
  • public phone booth
  • baby care (though it may not be available at all the Passport Seva Kendras)
  • newspapers stand
  • television
  • air-conditioned waiting hall with comfortable seating arrangement

Topping this, the Passport Seva Kendras are manned by trained staff who are courteous and mindful of the needs of the applicants. They are also capable of handling the technical tools at their disposal to complete the passport issuing processes.

What to avoid

The applicant is advised to avoid suppressing information or providing incorrect ones. The verification is a detailed one and incorrect or falsified information will be found out. In the event an applicant is caught corroborating false information, he or she will be fined INR 5000 and jailed for 2 years.

It is also advised to not bring explosives or ammunition or inflammable items to the passport Seva Kendra. It is not just illegal but highly dangerous too.

The Ministry of External Affairs has made the entire process of issuing of passports smooth and streamlined, hence there is no need to approach touts. The touts or middlemen not only overcharge but may also flee with the money.

In such an event where a tout has duped the applicant, the Passport Seva Kendra or its affiliates or the Ministry of External Affairs shall bear no responsibility at all.

Tracking the Application

An applicant not only can track their application online but also through the multi-lingual call centre. The Passport tracking call centre offers services in 17 languages and is a great help to the applicants.

The Fee Structure for acquiring a passport

ServiceApplication FeeTatkal Fee
Fresh Passport/Re-issue of Passport including additional booklet due to exhaustion of visa pages (36 pages) of 10 years validity.INR 1500INR 2000
Fresh Passport/Re-issue of Passport including additional booklet due to exhaustion of visa pages (60 pages) of 10 years validity.INR 2000INR 2000
Fresh Passport/Re-issue of Passport for Minors (below 18 Years of Age), of 5 years validity or till the minor attains the age of 18 whichever is earlier (36 pages)INR 1000INR 2000
Replacement of Passport (36 pages) instead of lost, damaged or stolen passportINR 3000INR 2000
Replacement of Passport (60 pages) instead of lost, damaged or stolen passportINR 3500INR 2000
Police Clearance Certificate (PCC)INR 500 
Replacement of Passport (36 pages) for deletion of ECR / Change in personal particulars (10-year validity)INR 1500INR 2000
Replacement of Passport (60 pages) for deletion of ECR / Change in personal particulars (10-year validity)INR 2000INR 2000
Replacement of Passport (36 pages) for deletion of ECR/ Change in personal particulars for Minors (below 18 Years of Age), of 5 years validity or till the minor attains the age of 18 whichever is earlier.INR 1000INR 2000

Vision

The vision of the Passport Seva Department is as follows:

“To deliver Passport services to citizens in a timely, transparent, more accessible, reliable manner and in a comfortable environment, through streamlined processes and committed trained and motivated workforce.”

To achieve this vision, the Ministry of External Affairs has built facilities around the country as well as within post offices to expedite the process of providing passports to applicants.

The Government uses technology in a big way to ease the process as well as secure all the data that is accumulated.

The passport, as we have seen is one of the most important documents of an individual. It undergoes thorough scrutiny before it is passed.

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After the accumulation of the information by the verification officer at the Passport Seva Kendra, an auto message is sent to the nearest police station for physical verification. An officer might pull over to the registered address of the applicant or may ask him or her to visit the police station.

All documents need to be kept properly for the visiting officer to verify. If it is found that the information has been obfuscated, then there may be serious legal repercussions.

As mentioned earlier the punishment for incorrect information is a fine of INR 5000 and a jail term of 2 years.

The mission of the Passport Seva Kendras is to provide the best services to its customers through the latest and upgraded facilities. These facilities are affordable and well within the reach of the common man.

The Ministry of External Affairs has also mandated these Kendras to be the final point of contact to avoid any duplication of work. A single window clearance helps the applicant avoid running from pillar to post. This not only saves time and energy but also winds the goodwill of the population.

Passport Seva Website

Passport Seva Website
Passport Seva Website

This is the website of Passport Seva which is a one-stop-shop for all information related to passport issuance and consular services. The website has a plethora of information and facilities which will be of great help to applicants as well as individuals scouring for information.

There are sections which have the contact information for the nearest Passport Seva Kendras. The locators are immensely helpful too.

The Passport Seva Kendra website is indeed a helpful website which has been designed keeping in mind ease of navigation. It has sufficient articles related to the working of the Government and the Ministry.

Al this wealth of information makes for a good read.

The entire process for applying for a passport is well explained and if followed by an applicant, acquiring a passport will be a child’s play.

Passport Seva Website Information Corner
Passport Seva Website Information Corner

This is a handy section which provides all the relevant information to the applicant of all the things necessary before applying for a passport.

About Passport Seva – Summary

HeadquartersNew Delhi, Delhi, India
Established Year1947
Company Websitewww.portal2.passportindia.gov.in

Passport Seva Customer Ratings

ServicesRating
Service & Support
Consular Services
Reach of Consular Services
Service provided by Passport Seva Kendra
Customer Service
Over All Rating

Passport Seva Mobile App

The Passport Seva App is a one-stop-shop for anyone wanting to apply for a passport.

Passport Seva Mobile App
Passport Seva Mobile App
  • Has the updated contact information of all the Passport Seva Kendras
  • Has the nearest PSK locator
  • Provides information regarding the fees structure through an inbuilt Fee calculator
Passport Seva Mobile App Interface
Passport Seva Mobile App Interface
  • There are 77 Passport Seva Kendras across the length and breadth of the country.
  • The Passport Seva Kendra was created under the National e-Governance Plan (NeGP) and in collaboration with Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) in a Public-Private Partnership.

Passport Seva Customer Care Support

Telephone Number for Customer’s1800-258-1800 (Toll-Free)

Conclusion

The Passport Seva Kendra is of immense help to the citizens of the country. It facilitates quicker methods of acquiring a passport, without hassles and under strict supervision. It also eliminates the involvement of middlemen and touts.

The fee structure too is affordable and will not be a constraint for the common man.

The Passport Seva Kendras are also equipped with amenities which put the waiting applicant at ease. They use the latest technology to provide top-notch services to the paying public.

However, it is always pertinent to remember that providing correct information to the verification officer is the prime responsibility of the applicant and any suppression or providing incorrect information will be dealt with severely.

Passport Seva FAQs

Q1: What is a Passport Seva Kendra?

It is a facility being provided by the Government of India to the citizens of the country for the disbursement of passports after strict verification of relevant documents.

Q2: What is the penalty for providing incorrect information?

Suppression and falsifying information is a punishable act and the perpetrator can be jailed for up to 2 years and fined INR 5000.

Q3: What is the vision of Passport Seva Kendras?

“To deliver Passport services to citizens in a timely, transparent, more accessible, reliable manner and in a comfortable environment, through streamlined processes and committed trained and motivated workforce.”

Q4: What are the amenities provided by Passport Seva?

  • Self-Service Kiosks
  • Photocopying booths
  • food and beverage facilities stand
  • public phone booth
  • baby care (though it may not be available at all the Passport Seva Kendras)
  • newspapers stand
  • television
  • air-conditioned waiting hall with comfortable seating arrangement

Topping this, the Passport Seva Kendras are manned by trained staff who are courteous and mindful of the needs of the applicants. They are also capable of handling the technical tools at their disposal to complete the passport issuing processes.

Q5: What are the future strategies of Passport Seva Kendra?

To enhance the process of disbursement of passports through greater usage of technology. This will further ease the entire cycle of providing a passport and will further save time.

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