The Centre is planning to roll out a pilot project where the data of all Tamil Nadu police stations under the Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) will be integrated with the passport seva application, for faster and more secure issuing of passports.
“CCTNS, a project under the Indian government for creating a comprehensive and integrated system for effective policing, has been completed by linking all police stations in the State,” said regional passport officer, K Balamurugan. He said that talks are ongoing with the State police to link it with the passport seva kendra. He also said that soon, the PAN card database will be integrated with the passport seva kendra.
He added that police verification had undergone several changes and the Ministry of External Affairs had developed mPassport police app for speedy submission of the police verification report. This app, which will facilitate field-level verification officers to directly capture the police verification report digitally, would do away with downloading and printing the personal particulars form.
The whole process will be paperless and time for police verification will reduce. It is being rolled out in Hyderabad and could soon be implemented in TN.
■ More dates for fixing appointment
■ An mPassport police app for speedy submission of police verification process
■ Merger of PAN card data with passport kendra
■ Issue of passports to first time applicants on post-police verification basis
Balamurugan also said that a passport applicant can now choose any appointment date from the earliest five available working days, while scheduling or rescheduling an appointment for passport-related services. Till now, fixing an appointment at the passport seva kendra for submission of passport application was being done the next available date. Balamurugan also defended the Centre’s decision to do away with police verification for issuing passports for first-time normal category passport applicants. To a query on whether it would compromise safety and security of the country, he said it would not help criminals. “Nobody can escape the tentacles of law,” he said.
He also highlighted there is a confusion among applicants on the new procedure for issuing passports to first time applicants. The whole process is the same, except that you have to furnish Aadhaar Card, election photo identity card, permanent account number card and an affidavit in the form of Annexure 1 available at passport India portal.
“This will enable faster issue of passport without any additional fee, subject to successful validation of Aadhaar number,” he added.
Meanwhile, the special scheme for replacement of passport for flood-hit victims will be on till February 7. Balamurugan said that till now 3,970 applicants, whose passports were damaged during the floods, have benefited from the scheme where replacement of passports was done free of cost.