Not many takers for passport ARN service

The number is mandatory to apply for passport-related services

Not many takers for passport ARN service

BangaloreOne centres which recently started issuing Application Reference Number (ARN), which is mandatory to apply for passport-related service, has received a lukewarm response.

The Regional Passport Office, introduced this option for walk-in applicants who throng the Passport Seva Kendra (PSK) for many services like applying for minors, senior citizens and other miscellaneous services.

The Application Reference Number (ARN) is generated through online registration and is mandatory to apply for passport-related services.

The Passport Office had received several complaints from applicants stating that touts were charging as much as Rs 850 to Rs 2,000 to generate these ARNs which simply involves registering on the Passport office website and creating a profile with details.

20 centres

Now the same service is available at around 20 centres of BangaloreOne and all centres of KarnatakaOne for a fee of Rs 15. Along with generating an ARN, staffers at these centres will also advise the applicants about the documents they need to carry to the PSKs to avoid confusion and repeated visits.

Around fifteen days after the service was introduced, only about 170 transactions have been recorded by the Electronic Delivery of Citizen Services (EDCS) under the Department of e-Governance.

Sources at EDCS said they expected it to pick up in the near future.

“It will take a while for people to know we are offering these services. We will go ahead and try to expand these services to more centres as we know that this service will become popular,” an EDCS official commented.

Passport Mela

To expedite the application process in view of the high demand for passports, a ‘Passport Mela’ was organised by the Regional Passport Office (RPO), Bangalore on Saturday.

The mela took place at two Passport Seva Kendras (PSK) on Lalbagh Road and Marathahalli in Bangalore. Around 1290 appointment slots were made available to ensure prompt issuance of passport and 855 passport applications were processed during the Passport Mela.

The appointment slots to register for the Passport Mela were made available at 6:30 pm on June 1, and all appointments were booked by the citizens, stated the press release.

To ease the rush

The Passport Mela was held to ease the rush of applicants and make the passport services available to more people.

In total, 855 passport applications were successfully processed during the Passport Mela.
The Bangalore RPO is handling more than 1,600 applications daily, five times more than it used to handle three years ago, the release further stated.

Since all the applicants had come after taking appointments, they can easily keep a track of their passport by checking the status online using their ARN, by logging on to www.passportindia.gov.in.

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