The Ministry of External Affairs will, on Friday, launch online payment system for passport aspirants at the time of booking appointments for submission of their documents at the Passport Seva Kendras.

“With this, only genuine applicants will book appointments and the number of ‘no-shows’ will reduce,” a statement from Regional Passport Officer P.S. Karthigeyan said.

The release added that a large number of applicants were not turning up at the Passport Seva Kendras despite taking valid appointments. Hitherto, passport applicants were making their payments at the time of submitting documents at the seval kendras.

This, he said, was not only resulting in lesser utilisation of the processing capacity of the seva kendras but also causing denial of appointments for other genuine applicants. Payments can be made while booking an appointment on either by credit card or debit card (Master and Visa) and through internet banking facility of State Bank of India (SBI). Applicants may also use the challan option provided on the website and deposit the money with SBI. These applicants can take appointments upon confirmation of payment by SBI in the online system. The online payment system will be applicable for appointments for Lalbagh Road, Marathahalli Outer Ring Road, Mangalore and Hubli passport seva kendras.

The online system will be rolled out to other seva kendras in the country in the coming weeks.