Come July, the city’s residents can apply for passports online from post offices. The Department of Posts, in association with the Regional Passport Office, Chennai, is working out modalities to help customers register passport applications online and is identifying post offices to offer the facility.
Officials of the department said customers could get a printout of the application from the postal employees. Once the applicants submit filled-in forms, the staff will upload the data online. “It is better for applicants to bring necessary documents such as proof of age and residential address. The employees have also been trained to assist applicants in filling up the forms,” said an official.
Once registered, customers would be provided acknowledgment receipt generated with appointment date for personal interview at the Passport Seva Kendras.
Initially, the service will be launched in 25 post offices in the Chennai City Region (CCR), including some in Vellore and Puducherry.
Of this, a minimum of 10 post offices in Chennai will be identified and the service will be extended to more offices depending on the patronage. Applicants will have to pay Rs.100 for the online service.
At present, customers have the option of paying the fee through internet or State Bank of India. Mervin Alexander, Postmaster General, CCR, said: “We are also working out modalities for using our e-payment service for paying passport fee. However, the employees will not be involved in verification of the documents of applicants.”
The department is also seeking a unique user name ID to facilitate its employees to register multiple applications.