“India mein passport ke liye bade saare papad belne padhte hain.”
Exactly don’t remember who said this, but the words stayed with me throughout my adolescence and are stuck even till now. The rules and regulations, the paperwork, the queues, the verification, the wait for its arrival…umm…basically everything related to a new passport is such an exacting task. It makes me shiver at the mere thought of it. Have you gone through the same?
I remember, when I got it made last year, I had comparatively gone through a much easier process. My friends and family said my botheration was comparatively none as they know passport application woes of unimaginable vexation. Which I will give it to them.
But, worry you not. The new set of rules, issued by the Ministry of External Affairs, for applying for a passport is the much-needed change. And, they will make you breathe a sigh of relief. Have a look.
1. It’s not mandatory to submit your birth certificate as proof of birth, anymore.
It was mandatory to submit a birth certificate for all applicants born on/after 26th January 1989, as per old guidelines. Now, any of the following documents containing the DOB of the applicant will suffice:
- Birth Certificate (BC) issued by the Registrar of births and deaths or the Municipal Corporation or any other prescribed authority whosoever has been empowered under the Registration of Birth & Deaths Act, 1969 to register the birth of a child born in India
- Transfer/school leaving/matriculation certificate issued by the school last attended/recognized educational board
- PAN card
- Aadhar card/E-aadhar
- Copy of the extract of the service record of the applicant (only in respect of Government servants) or the pay pension order (in respect of retired government servants), duly attested/certified by the officer/in-charge of the administration of the concerned ministry/department of the applicant
- Driving license
- Election Photo Identity Card (EPIC) issued by the Election Commission of India
- Policy bond issued by the public life insurance corporations/companies
2. It’s not mandatory anymore to mention the name of both the parents while applying for the child’s passport.
An applicant now only needs to provide the name of either one of the parents (mother or father) or of the legal guardian. This makes it easier for children with single parents or orphans who want to apply for a passport.
3. There’s no need for a marriage certificate.
Married applicants would not be required to provide Annexure K (for renewal) or any marriage certificate.
4. Divorcees need not provide the name of their spouse.
The Passport application form does not require the applicant to provide the name of her/his spouse in case of separated or divorced persons. Such applicants for passports would not be required to provide even the Divorce Decree.
5. Even orphaned children who have no proof of DOB can apply for a passport.
Orphaned children who do not have any proof of DOB such as Birth Certificate or the Matriculation Certificate or the declaratory Court order, may now submit a declaration given by the Head of the Orphanage/Child Care Home on their official letter head of the organization confirming the DOB of the applicant.
6. There are provisions for Sadhus and Sanyasis too.
Sadhus/ Sanyasis can apply for a passport with the name of their spiritual Guru mentioned in the passport application in lieu of their biological parent(s) name(s) subject to their providing of at least one public document such as Election Photo Identity Card (EPIC) issued by the Election Commission of India, PAN card, Aadhaar Card, etc wherein the name of the Guru has been recorded against the column(s) for parent(s) name(s).
7. The number of Annexes are reduced from 15 to 9.
The total number of Annexes prescribed in the Passport Rule, 1980, has been brought down to 9 from the present 15. Annexes A, C, D, E, J, and K have been removed and certain Annexes have been merged.
8. For adopted children, registered adoption deed is no longer required.
In case of issue of passport to in-country domestically adopted children, submission of the registered adoption deed would no longer be required. In the absence of any deed to this effect, the passport applicant may give a declaration on a plain paper confirming the adoption.
9. No attestation is required.
All the annexes that are required to be given by the applicants would be in the form of a self-declaration on a plain paper. No attestation/swearing by/before any Notary/Executive Magistrate/First Class Judicial Magistrate would be henceforth necessary.
10. Passport application fees have been reduced by 10 % for applicants under the age of eight and over the age of 60.
Not only that, new passports will be bilingual i.e. in English and in Hindi. Also, ration cards could be submitted while applying for tatkal passports.
We quite like how the archaic rules are being updated with recent times.
Source: Ministry of External Affairs