Weeding out passports bearing the same numbers, the Indian consulate in Dubai has asked holders of nearly 46,000 passports under the Z series to get these replaced by submitting fresh applications.
"The Government of India has issued instructions that all Indian passports with serial numbers Z-000001 to Z-045925 are to be recalled and new passports issued in their place," the Indian consulate in Dubai said in a statement Saturday.
The consulate said it had also issued certain passports under the Z series between February and September 2007.
In November 2007, India's Minister of State for External Affairs E Ahamed had told the the Lok Sabha, the lower house of parliament, that the Indian Security Press had in 2006 inadvertently issued a "repeat" of an earlier series printed in 1995. The "repeat" Jumbo passport booklets numbers were from Z-000001 to Z-056000.
Due to this duplication, holders of passports with those numbers were facing a lot of problems at immigration counters.
The Indian government had then decided to recall all these booklets and give new passports to their holders without any charge.
According to the consulate statement, fresh applications from the holders of such passports were being invited along with fresh photographs.
The consulate has opened a counter to deal with cases involving Z series passports, which are being withdrawn. The counter will be open from 8 am to 11 am every working day.
Applicants can also access online services at the consulate website, www.cgidubai.com, or visit the consulate with a specific appointment, it said.
The statement said there would be no new charges, including for delivery of the new passport, at the applicant's residence by courier.
New passports will be issued within the shortest possible time - five days or earlier.