Renewing my passport, part 3

By Abhijit Menon-Sen <ams@toroid.org>

2009-11-24

A couple of weeks after I received my new passport with the incorrect residential address, I headed back to the Regional Passport Office.

Unfortunately, I discovered that the RPO is closed on Wednesdays ("no public interaction"), but the information counter at the back was open, and to my surprise, I was told that I only needed to show up at room 10 (second floor) the next day with an application for the address to be corrected. I did that, and waited in a queue for half an hour or so.

In room #10 was a stern-looking lady who put her initials on my application without looking at it, and said I should submit it to the "corrections counter" 1A (downstairs). I stood in another queue to do that, and was told to submit a photocopy of the initialled application. I stood in another queue at a kiosk outside, then rejoined the queue at counter 1A. This time, my copy was stamped and returned, and I was told the passport would be dispatched the next Monday.

The ECR stamp, however, couldn't be fixed at the same time (although I was carrying all the necessary paperwork). The lady in room #10 started breathing fire when I asked about it, and said I should have the address corrected, and then come back again later to apply for the ECR status to be changed (for a fee of INR300). My protests that their documentation implies that a copy of the PAN card is sufficient fell on deaf ears.

The passport arrived by speed post today, with a hand-written correction to the address on the second page. I'll wait a while to regain my energy before the battle for ECNR status.

Update (2010-02-05): Only one visit to the RPO was needed.