Hyderabad: For the third consecutive year, the Regional Passport Office (RPO) in Secunderabad has bagged the first position in the country in terms of rendering services to applicants.
“We are in number one position with respect to tatkal and re-issuing passports, along with police verification, out of 37 passport offices in the country,” Regional Passport Officer E Vishnu Vardhan Reddy said on Monday.
Passports granted under Tatkal Scheme are issued immediately while the average time taken for passports issued under normal category was 10 days. The national average time for getting police verification certificate in 2017 was 23 days.
But, the RPO in Secunderabad was completing the police verification in five days, he said. Explaining about various institutional changes introduced by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), Reddy said the RPO had received as many as 5.89 lakh applications in 2017. Of them, 5.87 lakh passports were granted.
Of the 6.65 lakh applications received in 2016, around 6.53 lakh passports were issued. Pendency at the office was less than the pendency with the applicants. “We kept several applications on hold after applicants failed to submit a few valid documents,” he said.
Another reason for the dip in receiving applications was shifting of the data centre of the Southern Region from Secunderabad to the RPO office in Vijayawada in April 2017.
Plans were chalked out to launch five more Post Office Passport Seva Kendras (POPSKs) at the district headquarters in Siddipet, Adilabad, Medak, Khammam and Nalgonda. “We will start services in these five POPSKs in two months,” he said.
These five are in addition to the two POPSKs that have already been established at Warangal and Mahabubnagar districts. As many as 15,476 applications were processed at these two POPSKs since its inception from April 2017, he said.