Not to say things don’t change in India as there been some rapid changes in last decade. We have moved past of LPG lines, we have moved past of accepting daily power cuts as fate in a developing nation, we have moved past of considering trains as only way of transport due to higher prices of planes and bad roads… but as much things change, some still remain the same. Indian red tape and police system can be considered something like that.
Its been almost 3.5 yrs since I wrote about my last experience with applying passport in india and proudly bragged that situation seem to have improved much better than the past, but only to find from recent experience that the systematic nonsense continues to harass citizens same way since always.
In my last attempt for passport, I noticed only one stupidity that PSK refused to take AADHAAR photocopy on counter while this is just a number, which can be verified by the fingerprint scan or other means anyway installed inside PSK and this time it came about police verification.
This all started when on one fine day, I decided that I should get passports for wife and daughter as well. The payment, process etc all goes well and I didn’t had complaints even about charges or the leather covers sold “optionally” at 350 Rs while available @ 150-200 Rs on Amazon etc. To my surprise, the passport of daughter lands home within the same week and I tweeted my positive experience, all to but jinx it
To be fair, I had warned myself about the Police verification part being achilles heel but somehow riding on last two experiences, I was expecting much better from a much hyped MEA nowadays. Can blame to the news cycle as well which had hyped a case of Lucknow couple, where ministry repeatedly tried to explain to citizens that Police verification isn’t anything to be scared of and even on adverse reports on residency, it doesn’t stop passport. There was an office memorandum published somewhere as per which claimed that only citizenship needs to be verified and not a history of addresses. But all of these came out to be planted by MEA in media than any truth.
I tried to reach out to Official handles like @passportsevamea @MEAIndia @MEAQuery @rpoghaziabad but there was no attempt to confirm or deny if the office memorandum correct or not and if correct then why not being followed in this case. All I got, just bot type replies that what the current status is like I can’t look them up online or haven’t post in the same thread. I asked repeatedly why the case of past addresses verification where I lived around one and half year back but no one bothered to respond on that point.
I was forced to take another day leave for me and wife both from their respective workplaces to visit NOT THE SAME but another building (this time not even AC building at 42 degree), where I would meet many “victims” who are being dragged due to similar nonsense system on one excuse or another. Met a lady, who wrote everything correct in form but passport got printed as wrong birthplace and not the system, but she needs to run from one post to another to get it corrected.
Funny is, website still claims that its about more than one year but they still handing out forms to people to prove residence of 5 yrs. Yeah a printed form to be filled and wait for their mercy.
Does passport stand for only those with money living in own flats or villas? Nothing for those working men and women on rent? How they are expected to ensure that their house owners from past verify their credentials or local police know of them? How someone who moved from the particular city, goes back to the place or remember “exact local police station” to verify that he lived there? For example, in my case, I had BSNL bills showing dates and address, I had LPG records showing dates and Addresses, I had old Aadhaar copies showing past addresses but no.. these docs are meaningless and why they won’t be when even their own website is meaningless for them as the senior officer sitting in their CGH, Ghaziabad office told me “There is no official passport website”.. Really? Are they allowed to sit when not in their senses?
Apart from rant, some direct questions, which never answered:
- Why to verify 5 yrs when 1 year written on website? What you mean to achieve?
- If have to verify 5 yrs then why the same not written in first application form itself where applicant can provide the details with proof than enforcing an essential another visit in all such cases wasting time and money?
- Don’t all rent agreements go with Police verification? How hard its to verify? Don’t tell me that you know how plain fraud those process are, you got me right there.
- AADHAAR, LPG Statement, BSNL bills, Voter ID card valid for bank accounts and getting loans but not for passport?
The current status for me, Police verification sent to old address from where I moved since March’18. The notification, which came to me says that if I am not contacted then I need to contact and likely visit the old address in other city. BRAVO….
The saga still continues and status still remains Passport verification stand adverse and application pending. Not only for me but for many others like me while Ministry officials can gloat about improving Police verification process since as late as 2017 while there is nothing on ground. From Malya to Neerav Modi to lucknow couple submitting wrong name and address, all get their passports while the same stand denied for the common people following law
Apparently common sense is less common when it comes to particular ministry.
To the readers, please share your own experiences about the process in Passport ministry and Police verification. May be the voice counts something (not much hopes from particular ministry but may be someone has common sense left).