How to Get Your Passport: India’s Passport Application and Renewal Procedures

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When it comes to getting or renewing your passport, India, like any other country, has its specific formalities that need to be fulfilled.

According to the “Passports Act” from 1967, the Indian passport was established as the primary document providing the right to international travel and proof of Indian citizenship while abroad, for all Indian citizens.

type-of-passport-indiaThere are three types of passports available: the regular one (with its characteristic deep blue cover and 36 or 60 pages), available to all regular citizens for any ordinary travel (vacations, business trips, etc.), the diplomatic passport (with maroon cover), available only to diplomatic personnel and top government officials, and the official passport (white cover), issued to those representing the government on official business.

There is another type of passport India authorities issue only to citizens residing in certain states and territories (West Bengal, Assam and the other North Eastern States, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry): the Indo-Bangladesh passports and Indo-Sri Lankan passports that allow Indian nationals in those areas to travel to Bangladesh and, respectively, Sri Lanka.

The institution responsible with issuing and renewing Indian passports is the (CPV) division of the Ministry of External Affairs. CPV operates through Regional Passport Offices (RPO) in India (currently, there are 37 RPOs distributed across the country). For citizens abroad requesting a new passport, India’s diplomatic missions in other countries are responsible (currently 162).

Starting from 2007, the Government of India launched a new system, centralizing front-end activities, like passport printing, issuance and dispatch, and online linking with the police – the Passport Seva Project.

The objective was to make the process easier for applicants, faster and more transparent. Under this system, passport issuing was directed to 77 local offices throughout the country, the Passport Seva Kendras (PSK) and the District Passport Cells (DPC).

Nowadays, RPO take only certain special cases, regular applicants being directed to the local PSK and DPC. Keep in mind that any RPO, PSK or DPC will accept applications only from citizens residing within their jurisdiction at the time of application.

How to Apply for an Indian Passport?

First, you should know that, for getting a passport, India allows two possible procedures: applying in person or submitting your documents and forms through e-mail, the so-called Tatkal system.

Apart from the forms you need to fill, there are a few documents needed for the application. First, you must have a document proving your date of birth, usually a birth certificate, but, in special cases, a school or secondary school leaving certificate or an affidavit, sworn before a magistrate or notary, stating the date and place of your birth (for illiterate applicants) will do.

Second, in order to get a passport, India’s citizens need a proof of their current address: a utility bill, certificate from the employer, passport copy of the spouse or parents (for minors) etc.

If you use the Tatkal system to apply online for passport, you also need three of the following documents:

  • Electors Photo Identity Card;
  • Service Photo Identity Card released by State/Union Government;
  • Certificate for SC/ST/OBC;
  • Identity Card of Freedom Fighter;
  • Arms License;
  • Property documents;
  • Pension documents (Pension Book/Pension Payment order, Widow/Dependent Certificates, Widow Pension Order);
  • Railway Identity Cards;
  • Rations cards;
  • Birth certificate;
  • Student Photo Identity Cards;
  • Driving Licenses;
  • Bank/Kisan/Post Office Passbooks;
  • Income Tax Identity (PAN) Card;
  • Gas connection bill;
  • Aadhar Card issued by the UIDAI.

While most of these documents are required in any country of the world to get a passport, India’s issues regarding border conflicts and pre-independence-related problems cause some special considerations.

Passport OfficeSome categories, like the residents of Jammu and Kashmir and Nagaland, family members of serving or retired Government and PSU employees or students not residing in their home area need certain additional documents for passport application. Checking the official CPV website or asking the local PSK or DPC officials for information should clarify these additional requirements.

Tatkal users have to fill the e-form according to the rules stated on the website and schedule an appointment at the local PSK. They will receive an application receipt (with an appointment number included) that they must print and show at the PSK.

The platform allows them to track the status of their application in real time. As a piece of advice, it is important not to miss the scheduled appointment and have suitable photographs taken.

How to Renew an Indian Passport?

Obviously, it is much easier to renew your passport, India’s Tatkal system making it really fast. Apart from the e-form you must fill, you also need the following documents:

  • A copy of your passport’s first page, last page and of the page with the ECNR info and, also, your signature;
  • A proof of the current address (a utility bill, for instance);
  • If you wish to add your spouse’s name, you also need a copy of your marriage certificate.

If your address changed, you also need a proof of this change, for passport renewal.

To sum up, when it comes to getting or renewing your passport, India’s new regulations make the process a lot faster and easier, using the numerous local PSK and DPC and the online platform.

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How Did Passport Seva Improve the Indian Issuance System?

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passport sevaEver since 2007, when the Indian authorities approved Passport Seva Project, the process of getting or renewing a passport in this south Asian country has been substantially eased up so that citizens can facilely access services without having to lose themselves in bureaucracy.

The new system introduced online applications, making passport issuance more approachable, transparent, secure and reliable. By accessing passport.gov.in, Indian citizens can get all the information they need on how the system works, which the required documents are, location of passport offices, means of passport tracking and steps they must take to get their passports issued.

Passport Seva has re-organized front-end activities in passport offices, putting issuance, police linking, centralized printing and dispatch into place. There are 77 Passport Seva Kendras available throughout the country, where residents can go and obtain their travelling document without spending hours standing in line or filling out stacks of papers. The processing time has become considerably shorter as the stages of submitting the applications have been simplified.

 

Submission Flow at Passport Seva Kendra

The first thing you, as an Indian citizen, have to do in order to acquire a passport is to visit the Passport Seva portal in order to apply for this document. After filling in the e-form and uploading the documents (optional), you can get a valid appointment at the Passport Seva Kendra which is the closest to your address. However, keep in mind that it is mandatory to complete the online payment to get the appointment scheduled automatically. You can pay through your credit card, internet banking or SBI Bank Challan.

Once you have done that, you have to print out your receipt containing your application reference number (ARN) and take it with you on the day of the appointment. You should arrive there 15 minutes earlier.

After passing the security check and the guard clears your entrance to the premises, you will be asked to show your ARN for verification. Then, you will be referred to the Token Issuance area, where you will be given a token number and all your documents will be pre-checked and filed by specialized personnel. This process takes about 15 minutes.
The token is destined to guide you through the submission flow, indicating through color codes the stages you must undertake in order to start and finish the process.

Next, you will be directed to another chamber where, upon entrance, you must show your token number to a security guard to get in. Section A is the first stage of the actual application process. This is where you will have your photo and biometrics captured and your documents thoroughly verified, organized, scanned and uploaded by courteous personnel. You will also have to pay a fee, if you have not already done that online. It will only take about ten minutes to go by all four desks and complete the steps.

indian passportSection B is where you will have to wait for about 15 minutes until your token number is called. There are TV monitors available where you can watch when your turn comes. This is where Passport Office Government employees verify your file for correctness and completeness and sign it for you to be able to move to Section C.

As with the previous stage, you will have to check the display screen and pay attention to hear when your token number is called. In this section, your documents will be checked again, and a Government employee will tell you whether your file is complete or you need more documents in order to be granted a passport.

If everything is in order, you will be referred to the acknowledgement counter and you will be given a feedback form to fill out. You will collect your Acknowledgement Letter and, with that done, you will have finished the process.

The Acknowledgement Letter will help with find out when you will get your passport, tracking the status of your application online.

 

Useful Tips and Recommendations

Most residents who have gone through the process at Passport Seva Kendra have stated that the waiting time has been significantly cut down and the process is fairly comfortable and organized. However, to make things even easier, you should make sure that you do the self-attestation of the required documents and carry photocopies of the originals (marriage certificate, address proof). Take a ball point pen with you, as you are not allowed to fill out forms in ink or pencil.

The Indian Ministry of Internal Affairs advises against paying agents to get you through the submission process faster. The steps are easy to follow and guidelines are offered for free on passport.gov.in. No agent is authorized to intermediate such services and cannot influence passport issuance.

It is also important to know that you can enter the premises of Passport Seva Kendra with cell phones and car keys, but Laptops, cameras or iPads are not allowed inside.

Passport Seva Kendra – Issue of Passports to Indian Citizens

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Travel Abroad through Getting Indian Passport and VISA

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The Indian passport serves as a fundamental prerequisite to travel abroad. This is a legal document that is issued by the Government of India to its constituents. Whether you want to travel abroad for personal or business purposes, you should start knowing on how to get Indian passport.

indian passport visaBefore planning to get this passport, you have to understand its various types. The Indian passport comes into three types – the regular, diplomatic and official passport. A regular type is issued to any citizen for ordinary travel. The typical examples of these are business and vacation trips. The diplomatic type is issued to any ranking officials and diplomatic couriers while the official passport is issued to people representing the Indian government on executive business.

Whatever types of passports you opt to get, it is always best to know how to get one. You can do this through conducting an extensive research. You can also ask the authorized personnel in your local area to get more factual information. To expand your ideas, take the succeeding paragraphs as your reference:

Step-by-Step Procedures on How to Apply Indian Passport

The Indian passport has a deep blue cover with a symbol of India. It contains 36 pages with a note from the President of India. This note serves as a proof that the bearer is allowed to pass and be treated as per international norms. Other details included on the passport are the place of issue, date of expiry, passport number, signature of the passport holder, complete address and a lot more.

Getting this passport is not a complicated task. Although it takes enough time, it doesn’t mean that you need to spend more effort and money. Like other individuals, you can get your passport via online. The main question is, how can you do this? To have an online passport application, you need to complete the following steps and procedures:

Step 1: Prepare the Needed Documents – The needed documents may vary, depending on your preferred type. To ensure that you will get your passport, you have to prepare a proof of birth date. Depending on your available files, you can present a birth certificate, school leaving certificate or an affidavit. Other essential documents are electric bill, income tax assessment order, marital status documentation and a lot more.

Step 2: Get an Application Form via Online – Simply browse your computer and start downloading the e-form. Make sure that you verify the website you are dealing with. If you don’t know where to download an application form, simply visit the Indian’s government website that is related to passport and US Visa.

Step 3: Fill in the Needed Details and Submit Online – In filling out, make sure that you put authentic information. After filing, click “Schedule Appointment”. Appointments are given for a particular time and date. Then, you have to print the application receipt.

Step 4: Know the Exact Cost of Online Passport Application and Pay– Before you get your passport, you need to pay its exact charges. Online payment can be made using credit cards, internet banking or other related modes.

In getting your Indian passport, it often takes six to eight weeks. As advised, always ensure that you have the needed documents and submit them instantly. Within the schedule time, you are confident that you can have your passport.

Things You Need to Consider in Applying Indian Passport

Most people claimed that filling an Indian passport and VISA is quite a daunting task. Even if you don’t have enough knowledge on how to get them, you don’t have to worry about. There are various ways on how to get your Indian passport. For some, they prefer to seek help from experts. Like them, you can depend on some agents who are willing to process your passport and UK Visa.

If you wish to depend on these experts, make sure that you are depending on an efficient one. You also need to provide the needed documents to guarantee that you will get what you really want. Depending on your preferred passport type, the process may take several weeks. Therefore, take time to wait and always follow the basic methods to avoid any trouble.

Upon getting your Indian passport and VISA, you are free to travel abroad. However, make sure that you are familiar with its expiration date. Once your passport is expired, you have to renew it. If not, authorized government agencies will never allow you to travel.

As you have noticed, getting your Indian passport can be easily done. You just need to follow its exact steps and procedures. With your authenticated passport, you are free to travel abroad without any worries. This is the reason why most people prefer to get their own passport and VISA.

Are you excited to travel abroad? Then, start getting your own Indian passport and see how it changes your vacation or business travel experience!

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