The passport applicants can now make use of a new messaging service that will allow them to receive reminders, response to queries, alerts and updates on their mobiles.
The new service being offered by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) will come at a cost of Rs 30. While it has been introduced on Wednesday in the Passport Offices at Chennai, Jalandhar and Chandigarh, it is expected to be offered in Bangalore shortly.
Once the charges for Passport Seva SMS Services are paid at Passport Seva Kendra, the applicant will get the progress status and reminders/alerts for pending action. The service will be rendered until the passport or the miscellaneous service is rendered. An SMS query can also be sent to know the current status of the application, a press release from MEA stated.
To enrol, applicants will have to select the option online and pay the fees in cash while visiting the Passport Seva Kendra. Once registered, reminders will be sent to the mobile phone for submission of documents and collection of passport, alerts for exceptions or errors in processing at any stage, penalty and show cause notices and updates for police verification and passport printing and dispatch.
Applications can be tracked by sending an SMS to 9704100100 to know the current status of the application and police verification status.
These messages could be charged an extra amount, depending on the service plan of the applicant with the service provider.
The service is being offered by Tata Consultancy Services through Unicel Technologies Private Limited.