Obtaining Passport in India has become an uphill task for the citizens who wish to travel abroad. It is pretty much a paramount task to first get an appointment through the online portal and then ensure that the paper work is complete or say is more than that is prescribed on the Govt's Passport Seva Site
A really very nice and thought provoking article was published on Times of India -
No passage from India: Perhaps it's time we changed the names of our passports to 'stop-ports'
But I felt it lacked some points that need to be added to highlight the atrocities of babudom in this space of Passport Issuance. A few of them are -
- At the major PSKs, there is always a lack of trained resources. Though the initial stage is outsourced to TCS for checking files and papers, but then either they do not have the resources to handle the influx or they do not well trained to understand the case
- As per the Mandatory Supporting papers required, either one of the Address Proof or Identity proof is required, but then height of babudom that they find ways to seek more supporting papers though the set submitted meets the requirements. e.g. - It for proof of residence Ration Card copy is attached they would still seek "Voter ID", even though you are carrying your old passport with yourself and that serves the purpose for many requirements, they would still seek "Identity Proof" as if the old passport issued from the same authority is not valid even though you have used it to travel international
- The Forms that are suddenly required to be filled up are either not available at the PSK or the staff that handles the counter is missing or the Form in itself is priced double than it is available at the shop outside the PSKs
- Appointment booking slots open after 6 PM (for online appointment booking) but then within another 5 minutes, either you are still struggling or never get that appointment you want, because someone has overbooked the slots (may be the babus have their clouts to ensure that enough appointments are not booked).
- To top it all, once you have completed all the formalities, the Babus to be approving your final stage of personal interview pose questions that are like -
- "Can I see the Marriage Certificate?"
- "Can I see the Marriage Invitation Card?"
- "Can I see the declaration by the priest who performed the Marriage?"
I mean, the way I understand this is - You would be lucky if you got all your papers cleared and passport issued at the first time you get an appointment. This is the level of harassment that the Babudom has ensured for Passport Issuance....I can make that statement as I know of around 15 or 20 such cases where the folks had to make at least 2 rounds to the PSK before getting their Passports...And if it is Tatkaal, you have had it for good.....more stuff awaits you at the PSKs