Good news for passport applicants! Passports will now be issued within a month as the police department has decided to complete the applicant’s verification process within three weeks before forwarding the records to the Regional Passport Office.

In an informal chat with reporters here on Friday, Regional Passport Officer K. Srikar Reddy said that city police officials had promised to issue the police verification certificate (PVC) in time. Police so far have not been able to carry out the process, thanks to bandobust duties. Senior officials have also promised to complete procedures within 21 days, Reddy explained.

He said that police in other districts were sending PVCs in time, thus facilitating officials to deliver passports in a month. Listing out the measures taken up by the Government for a hassle-free issue of passports, Mr. Reddy said a whopping 5,49,759 passports were issued in 2012, and that it was a record when compared to other centres in the country. In all, Passport Seva Kendras (PSKs) received 5,72,856 applications in 2012, registering a 20 per cent rise when compared to 2011. The demand may go up this year. “We have enough capacity to meet the rising demand for the next four years. As promised, we are now able to issue Tatkal passports in one day and normal fresh passports in about a month’s time,” Mr. Reddy said.

According to him, close to 10,000 applications were pending owing to adverse reports submitted by police against applicants. “We will send notices to them seeking more information about their applications and later resolve them,” he maintained. Two per cent of applications were pending due to submission of fake documents and wrong address. A mini Passport Seva Kendra in Karimnagar district will be opened shortly. The government has sanctioned Rs.18 lakh for the construction of the office. The site for setting up a similar facility at Bheemavaram is yet to be identified, the official said.

More In: Hyderabad