For those hassled by the taxing procedure of applying for passports, here is good news: they can at last breathe easy and apply online.
A new "simple and applicant-friendly" system of online application for passports will be effective from Wednesday.
"In a step towards simplification of the passport application procedure, it has been decided to introduce online registration of passport applications at Registration and Passport Office (RPO), Delhi, with effect from August 9, 2006," a press release by the external affairs ministry said.
Under the new system, a passport applicant with access to Internet facility can go to the website passport.gov.in, select 'Online Registration' and fill in the form.
"Adults as well as minor applicants can register online for fresh passports, reissue of passports (where the validity of the passport held has expired or is about to expire) and new passport booklets in lieu of lost or damaged passports," the release added.
Once the registration is completed, the applicant will get a printout of the registered application showing the date and time to visit the RPO, Delhi, for submitting the application along with the requisite documents.
Online registrants will not be required to take any tokens and can straightway go to counter no 14 in hall no 1 in the passport office and submit their forms on the date and time indicated in the printout.
Besides this new facility of online registration, the existing system of submitting applications at passport offices, district passport cells (DPCs) and Speed Post centres will continue as before.