Applicants seeking passports under the tatkal system and police clearance certificates can walk-in for interviews at the Passport Seva Kendras (PSKs) in Tiruchi and Thanjavur, without appointments, from November 11 onwards.

Announcing some significant changes in the procedures followed at the two PSKs, the Regional Passport Office at Tiruchi has also said that the online appointment issuing system would now be open from six p.m., for passport applicants under the normal category.

Till now, the online appointment system under which applicants are issued appointments up to 15 days in advance opened at 8 a.m.

The Passport Office has also announced that residents from Ariyalur and Pudukottai districts, who were hitherto required to apply only at the Thanjavur PSK, can henceforth apply for passports at the Tiruchi PSK under “unavoidable circumstances.”

“The changes have been made based on the feedback from the applicants and the public demands aired at the passport adalats,” K. Balamurugan, Regional Passport Officer, told The Hindu.

Online application

Elaborating on the changes, Mr. Balamurugan said applicants seeking passports under the tatkal category and police clearance certificates, which are required for certain countries, can walk in at the PSKs after registering their applications online.

They need not take an appointment under the online system and instead appear any time between 9.15 a.m. and 1 p.m. at the PSKs.

They would be required to produce the printout out of the application registration number generated under the online system.

These applicants would be handled through a separate desk, Mr. Balamurugan clarified.

The decision to open the online appointment system in the evenings was also based on popular demand as many office-goers and businessmen found it difficult to spend time in the morning hours to register their applications online, he said.

Applicants, whose passport applications have been rejected at the PSKs for deficiency of documents, can also appear at the kendras any day before 1 p.m., without fresh appointments.

However, this facility would be available only for applicants whose applications have been signed by the officers indicating the reason for the rejection.

Access to internet

Applicants who do not have access to or cannot use internet, can utilise the services of the facilitation counters run by ex-servicemen and differently-abled persons at the Regional Passport Office in Tiruchi and at the Collector's Office at Thanjavur for assistance to register the applications online for a nominal service charge of Rs.30 and Rs.50 respectively. They can also approach the kiosks available at the PSKs to register the applications at no extra cost.

Mr.Balamurgan clarified that passport applicants have to register in the new website: only.

No additional charges are required to be paid other than the fee prescribed for various services by the government, he said and appealed to people not to approach touts or agents for availing passport services.

Complaints in this regard can be lodged with the Passport Officer or the police. Grievances with regard to issue of police verification reports can also be lodged with the police or Directorate of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption.