I have been reading many blogs on how to get the passport with the new Passport Seva Kendra started by the MEA. Decided to pen down my experience.If I have to give a rating I would give them 10/10. Courteous, Efficient all adjectives can be put here.
Mine was a reissue with an address change. My earlier passport was issued from the Indian consulate in San Francisco USA for 10 years. I travel very frequently so the passport pages got exhausted. I had relocated to India about an year back so I had all the address proof for residency at the same place. I had a valid visa for travel but no pages so I had to apply under tatkaal so that i could travel the coming week. I did research on various forums and blogs on how to do it.
Please note you don't need any Affidavits, Form I , Form F etc its a direct straight forward way present your case of urgency and the passport officer decides if it can be made Tatkaal.
Step 1: Register online at http://passportindia.gov.in and fill in the necessary application forms. From Aug 16, 2010 they have done away with walk in appointments so the only option is to take an online appointment. They have taken the didactic criticism and changed the way the appointment is made it now shows the earliest available date ( the older system had its issue but i wont go into that). I took a date for 31 Aug 2010 for the 09:45am slot.
Step 2: Gathering all the papers required before the appointment date
1)Address Proof: These are the ones I carried for address proof if you have more take it ( more the merrier)
a) Electricity Bill ( Jul 2009 & Jul 2010 Original + 1 Copy self attested)
b) Gas Bill ( Jul 2009 & Jul 2010 Original + 1 Copy self attested)
c) Landline phone number ( Airtel Jul 2009 & Jul 2010 Original + 1 Copy self attested)
2)Marriage Certificate ( Original + 1 Copy self attested)
3)Old Passport (Original + 1 Copy first and last two pages only self attested)
Arrival at PSK:
I took the appointment at PSK-Sai Arcade. I reached there by 09:30am and they have a big parking area behind the PSK, the charges are INR20/- for 2 hours.Ask the security outside for directions if you cant find the board.
There was a short line at the entrance TCS folks were checking against a list to make sure we did have an appointment that day. The next was a table where they made sure we had the documents ( address proof only) , it just took 5 minutes for this. Then the frisking by security guard and voila you enter a air conditioned room. For those folks who have had experience with the Passport Office on MG Road this one would be an absolute shocker!!
Entrance to PSK:
Counter for Token & Counter A (Customer Service Executive):
At the next counter they gave me a Token number. I was then let inside into another waiting room with TV screens which showed which token was being serviced at which counter ( Q6 30 @ Counter A5 etc). Here I had to wait for 5 minutes before I was ushered into a cubicle with a Customer Service Executive (CSE). The online form you had filled is pulled out , there are two computer screens so you can see what the CSE is typing. Once I confirmed everything is fine, he took my snap and also finger prints. Post that CSE scanned all my documents ( took only 2 of the 3 proofs I had brought along) and uploaded them online with my application. It was printed and made into a hard file with my file number on the top.
I asked them to make it Tatkaal he said it can only be done by the Granting Officer , he put a POSTIT with the request on the top of my file. I paid INR1500/- the normal fee for Jumbo Passport Booklet. All this took just 20 minutes
Counter B ( Verification Officer):
From here on the government machinery takes over. I had read at many places that there are 30 Counter for CSE but only 6 counters Verification Officers(VO). That is due to the fact that the work is just verifying the address proof you had provided and was scanned at the earlier counter A. For me the verification was just a 2 minute job, but for the folks ahead of me who did not have all the papers the VO rejected/asked for clarifications that took time, then the usual debate between the applicant and Vo on what is valid etc takes more time. If the papers are in order they would look at the original and type verified and OK. That's all there is to it.
The wait here was longer as few folks ahead of me had some issue with their papers ( all related to address proof). Here also I told them about Tatakal and I was told it would be done by the grating officer
Counter C ( Granting Officer):
This is the last step if its a normal passport. The Granting Officer (GO) approves the passport application as Granted and cancels the older passport and returns the same to you. Then you walk out of the PSK. But since mine had to made tatkaal it was a little different. I made my case for Tatkaal saying my work was travel and I cannot wait for 3-4 weeks. My passport had lot of visa stampings and they also saw that in less than 5 years I had exhausted all the pages, she gave me a sympathetic hearing and approved the same after ensuring I had 3 address proofs, no Affidavits, Forms I/F etc are required. Just present your case if valid Tatkaal is approved.
The wait time here is minimal.
Repeat of the circle: A --> B --> C
Once it was approved I had to go back to the same CSE at Counter A make the new payment for Tatkaal ( INR 1500) and they issued me a new receipt for INR 3000/-. With this my file again moved to the Counter B VO and then again to Counter C GO. This one doesn't consume much time you can go back to the same folks who did it earlier they recognize you and know it has been changed from normal to tatkaal and approve it immediately. In my case the Police Verification is post passport issuance .
At the exit there is a touch screen to give feedback 5 questions all straightforward, I gave them an excellent for all with the experience I had at the PSK. Here you get a print out of the passport application saying granted , police verification required/ not required etc.
I was out of the PSK office by 1130am.
The Online Status for the next few days:
Go to http://passportindia.gov.in/wps/portal/statustracker
Enter you file number and date of birth
File Number BN000000000000000
Date of Birth 00/00/0000
Given Name xxxx
Type of Application Tatkaal
Application Received on Date 31/08/2010
My status were as follows:
31Aug :You would receive an sms/email once the passport is dispatched.
1 Sep :You would receive an sms/email once the passport is dispatched.
2 Sep :You would receive an sms/email once the passport is dispatched.
3 Sep :Status Applicant passport with Passport Number Z000000 has been dispatched on 03/09/2010 via speed post. The speed post tracking number is EK00000000IN
Service Level Agreement on the website:
Type of Application: Tatkaal
Type of Police Verification: Police Verification is required on a Post-Passport Issuance basis
Expected Time of Passport Dispatch: On third working day excluding the date of submission of application - without waiting for the Police Verification Report.
I received my passport on 4th Sep 2010 by speed post ( 5 days in total including the day of the submission). Most efficient service by Govt. of India. Hats off to the MEA in streamlining the entire process!!!