MEA says all north eastern states will have passport offices by January

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Agartala, Jan. 1 (ANI): All eight northeastern states -Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Tripura will have passport offices, the Ministry of External Affairs has said.

“The government’s plan is to have a Passport Seva Kendra (PSK) in each northeastern state. All states now have a passport office and as of now, only two states Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh do not have passport offices. But by January next year, both will have passport offices. So, with Tripura, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh done all eight states of the north east shall have PSK,” said Mukesh Kumar Pardeshi, Joint Secretary of Ministry of External Affairs and Chief Passport Officer.

He was speaking to reporters after the inauguration of the PSK at Agartala by Tripura Minister for Finance and Information Bhanulal Saha.

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According to Pardeshi, the modern computerised passport office is part of the Government of India’s ambitious Digital India programme to provide fast service to people at their doorsteps.

“First, the travel time will be reduced; people can go to the capital city of their state and submit their applications. The PSK is a modern office and it is all computerised, and we are following the principles of e-governance. It is a part of the promise of Digital India. So, the time taken for submission will be reduced and at the same time security has been enhanced. We are taking photographs here and also taking bio-metric. We are all connected with the police department. So in real-time, the form electronically goes to the police,” said Pardeshi.

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Later a formal programme of inauguration of the PSK, Agartala was organised and the foundation stone was laid by Bhanulal Saha.

Addressing the gathering on the occasion, Saha said that the opening of the regional passport office at Agartala would go a long way in resolving the problem of obtaining passports in the state.

He also demanded that the Centre make arrangements for issuing of all types of passports, including official and tatkal passports and their printing from the PSK. (ANI)

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