Since the online passport application system, you do not need an agent and you can apply for new or renew Indian passport on your own. Also, as NRI, you also do not need an agent and can apply for passport renewal as NRI using the same process. But, at times, especially as NRI, you are in time crunch and if you experience delays with getting your passport, you may need to re-reschedule flights, extend leaves, etc. which is not ideal. You may be stuck trying to figure out your options to expedite the processing and get your passport soon. Recently, one of our readers, Charan, experienced similar processing delay situation with his passport not arriving in 10 days. He was able to expedite the process by working with Regional Passport Office (RPO) . Below is his experience and tips to expedite or raise complaint for delayed passport delivery. Thanks a lot to Charan for taking time to share his experience with our readers. We really appreciate it ! You can share your experience at community forum or email us at redbus2us (at) gmail.com
Background – My Indian Passport Renewal Delay :
- Applied for Indian Passport Renewal on Oct 16th at local Passport Seva Kendra (PSK) using normal processing.
- I need to fly on Nov 2nd. I was expecting that I will get passport renewal done in 7 to 10 days and applied under normal, instead of tatkal.
- Even after 5 days it was in ‘Passport application is under review at Regional Passport Office.’ status. Now, I am afraid that I may not get the passport before my departure date and I can’t fly with my current passport as it got ‘Cancelled Stamp’ on it.
- Below were my options left :
- We can’t cancel the Application which is under processing so that I can submit another Application this time in tatkal
- Tried to contact Customer Care with no luck.
- No ONLINE option to upgrade from Normal to Tatkal
- Well, for this option I heard that we have to visit RPO(not PSK). In my case it is 14hr travel from where I live. Even, if I visit the RPO I am sure how Should I proceed here…
After further research and advice, I proceed with below steps
Process to Expedite Indian Passport Application Delays with RPO :
I decided to visit RPO. This time I don’t want to take any chances. So called customer care to confirm below:
Step 1 : Called Customer Service to check and verify everything :
I wanted to check if folks at PSK can’t do anything with my case like below :
– Can they cancel current Application in order to submit new tatkal Application.? (Nope, we have to visit RPO)
– Can they convert/upgrade NORMAL application to tatkal.? (Nope, we have to visit RPO)
– Is anything pending at PSK instead of RPO? (No , Application was under review at Vizag RPO)
– Why I have to visit Vizag RPO when my RPO is Vijayawada as my file number starts with VJ***?(He wasn’t sure about it, but he was sure that I have to visit Vizag. Then he gave me Vizag RPO contact number)
– Do I have to take an appointment for enquiry? (No, we can go for general enquiry between 9:30am and 1pm. For safer side, still I tried to book an appointment but with ni luck. It was giving me an error saying Selected RPO i.e. Vijayawada was not having the facility please select another location. *which we can’t do*)
– What documents do I have to carry? ( I called Vizag RPO contact for this, he wasn’t sure about the documents needs to be carried but he mentioned I may need supporting documents which proves the urgency)
Step 2: Visiting Regional Passport Office (RPO)
After traveling almost 17 hrs. finally on 23rd Oct’ 19 I was at Vizag RPO by 10:30. Surprisingly there wasn’t anyone near RPO office except few guards. They well received and helped me inside. Again wasn’t expected that.
In that building all together there is a separate floor for Vijayawada RPO enquiry cases. And I am the only visitor over there. APO(Assistant Passport Officer) invited me to his room and offered ne a seat. After explaining my situation, instead of asking any cross questions (at least I was expecting) he just asked my application number and then he was trying to explain why my file wasn’t move forward.
Reasons for Passport Application Processing Delays:
He said ‘
• as we introduced PSKs all our RPO staff are dispersed to different PSKs and we are short of staff who can approve the normal Applications in quickly manner.
• Another reason he said was right now the new passport booklets production is happening only at Mumbai and New Delhi RPOs. And then they are getting delivered to other RPOs.’
While explaining these he just processed my application and said ‘you
will receive your new passport by Wednesday i.e. 30th Oct’19. I was like OK
then I just checked the status on Passport portal instantly and status was
changed from Under review to waiting for printing or something like that. Then
was remembering my 17hr journey and my flight to New York on 3rd Nov, I asked
him like ‘what options do I have if I don’t receive it by 30th Oct as I have to
fly on 3rd Nov?’
APO: I didn’t see any reason that it will be delayed.
Process to Upgrade from Regular to Tatkal Processing for Indian Passport :
Me: I understand but If something goes wrong it is hard to come Vizag again. Is there any way we can upgrade this current Application to tatkal so that I can receive it in next couple of days.?
APO: We can do that but why you want spend another 2k bucks unnecessarily. You will definitely get it by 30th.
Me: I don’t want to take any chance.
APO: Well, do you have any supporting documents to show the urgency?
Me: Showed him my New York return tickets.
APO: what is the reason you wanted to fly by this date?
Me: Got a new job, and have to report as soon as possible.
APO: Please mention that you want to convert Application to tatkal and about new job opportunity in requesting letter and pay 2k near cash counter and get the bill.
Me: Wrote the letter with requested details and paid 2k.
I didn’t submit any document for my new job opportunity except my flight return tickets. As I did not had other letters handy, I just mentioned that details of the job and etc. in requesting letter.
Then he just upgraded to tatkal and sent application for printing then said ‘you will receive new passport by tomorrow or day after tomorrow’. He also gave me the copy of first page of the new passport with new passport number. I said thank you and left his office .
It was a corporate level experience. Everything was smooth and everyone over there were so professional.
Passport Delivered after two Days
Today i.e. 26th Oct’19, after two days of upgrading to Tatakal, I got my new Indian passport by speed post delivered to home.
Lessons Learnt, Tips for Faster Processing:
- Always go for Tatkal, to avoid issues. That’s the blunder I did. Tatkal wasn’t available at local PSK. So been through normal process in my case, check before hand and go for tatkal to avoid any issues like mine.
- Keep buffer of 20 to 30 days for passport, if you plan to apply for regular processing as there can be delays.
- If you do not see any movement in application process after a week or so, do not delay, visit your nearest RPO and then try to expedite or convert to Tatkal. You will have better idea, if you visit them.