Marri Ramu

Police likely to give adverse report if applicant is not found at address

Misuse of Tatkal facility leads to increase in fake passport racket

Tatkal passports originally meant issuance without police verification

HYDERABAD: Did you obtain passport under the ‘Tatkal’ scheme? Then make sure the police verification of your application is completed before you leave the country. Otherwise, chances are that your passport could be cancelled for no fault of yours!

On the top of it, police might even suspect you of being indirectly connected to a passport racket recently busted by the Commissioner’s Task Force. Police verification has become vital ever since a racket run by three agents who acquired passports under the Tatkal scheme by presenting fake documents with alleged connivance of an employee of the Regional Passport Office here came to light.

Last year, the Ministry of External Affairs introduced a new set of rules under Tatkal facilitating securing of passports by presenting three documents confirming the applicant’s identity. By this, a person would get the passport soon after submitting the form with police verification to be followed later.

In the normal course, a passport is issued only after police verification. Exploiting these rules, the three-member gang started securing passports through forged documents. Naturally, the police sent adverse reports about such applicants.

“The agents colluded with a passport office employee who would keep in abeyance the adverse reports sent by the police,” a police officer associated with the investigation observed.

Ascertaining facts

But, why should people who obtained passport under Tatkal by presenting genuine documents land in trouble? That’s because only those in emergency obtain passports under the scheme and fly abroad immediately. Since they are not available at the addresses mentioned in the applications, the police would send an adverse report.

Hence, the adverse reports include genuine cases along with those who submitted forged papers. All of them are liable to be called for explanation by the passport office officials as also the police to ascertain facts! The advice of the police now is: get the verification done before going abroad on a Tatkal passport.