50 million Indians have passports

Last Updated: Wednesday, February 1, 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 1, 2012 - 21:21

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