50 million Indians have passports
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Last Updated: Wednesday, February 01, 2012, 21:21
  
New Delhi: There are 50 million passport holders in the country and the Ministry of External Affairs expect the number to reach up to 100 million in next 10 years.

With simplified process and increasing number of passport offices and Passport Seva Kendras (PSKs), the number of those holding passports, which was at meager 40,000 40 years back, has increased manifold, officials said here today.

During January to December 2011, the 37 Passport Offices, Headquarters and the Office of the Chief Secretary of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, issued 58.69 lakh passports(inclusive of 2840 Diplomatic passports and 28,067 official passports) and rendered 4.68 lakh passports related miscellaneous services, they said.

The 178 Indian Missions/Posts issued 10.27 lakh passports in the same time period, they said, adding, thus, the Ministry, in total, rendered 73.65 lakh passport services.

The number of passport applications received during the same period in Passport Offices was 60.73 lakh which is the highest number received ever in a year.

Talking about visa-on-arrival, they said nationals from 12 countries are given the facility of visa-on-arrival and extending it to some other countries, including Russia, was under consideration.

Some of the other important steps to make the passport issuance system simpler and speedier included decentralization through District Passport Cells and Speed Post Centres, online receipt of application, centralized printing of passport for non-computerized Missions abroad, and Passport Adalats to address grievances and the careful implementation of RTI Act.

PTI


First Published: Wednesday, February 01, 2012, 21:21


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