The process now has changed significantly and so much for the better. I got the passport in about a week after applying for a tatkal passport. Let me go over the steps here. Please note a few things with respect to my application
- It was for a minor.
- It was a renewal of a passport that expired less than 3 years ago.
- There was no address change. The address on the expired passport and the new passport is the same.
Step 1 : Create a loginCreate an account on https://portal2.passportindia.gov.in/AppOnlineProject/user/userLogin. Give a valid email id as you will need to validate the email id after registration.
Step 2 : Apply for Fresh Passport / Reissue of PassportOnce you login, click on the link that says apply for fresh passport / Reissue of passport. Follow the instructions and download the PDF and complete it. If you are using Adobe 10 then you can save the PDF. Use the offline method where you have to fill in the form > Save an XML file on your desktop and then upload it onto the site.
Step 3 : Schedule a date
On the same site you have to schedule a date at the Passport Seva Kendra. There are slots that open up every day at 4:00 PM and within about a minute they get filled up. The important point to note is that they open up at 4:00 PM on the server time at the passport office and this time is located at the top left hand corner of the screen. Keep applying for a slot right from 3:55 PM continuously refreshing the time. If you stay idle then it times out the session and you will have to login again. Do not login with the same id on multiple computers it will log you out of all the sessions. Do not give up, it took me 3 days to figure it out and finally get a date. Each day they open up the slots for 1 day about 4-5 days from the date you try to make the booking.
Step 4 : Collecting the documents
You can get the list of documents needed by going to this URL - https://portal2.passportindia.gov.in/AppOnlineProject/docAdvisorSecure/attachmentAdvFresh. Select the appropriate choices and it will give you the list of documents needed. You will have to carry photocopies of these documents and also the original on the date and time that you got a booking for in the Passport Seva Kendra. In addition to these documents I was asked to give the photocopy of the fathers passport and the mothers passport. You do not need to carry photographs. They are taken in the passport seva kendra.
Step 5 : Submit documents at the Passport Seva Kendra
Report at the allotted time at the passport seva kendra. Its a 4 step process
- Get the documents verified and get a token. At this point they will put the photocopies of your documents in a file.
- Your original documents are scanned, photograph is taken and fees collected. At this point they will collect the fees based on whether the application is tatkal or normal.
- The documents are verified online that were scanned in step 2 vs what is present in the file.
- The file is submitted and a receipt is given to you and the old passport is stamped.
Step 6 : Passport is sent to your address by speed post
The passport is then dispatched to your house by speed post. The status of this can be viewed on the website by logging in. The day the passport is dispatched you are sent an SMS on the registered mobile number.
The process is very simple and straight forward now. The documents can be photocopied at the passport seva kendra as there is a photocopy center inside and also there is an ATM to withdraw money if needed. The kendra's are air conditioned and there are chairs to sit down and wait for your turn. You have to wait for your token to come up on the big TV displays and then go to the appropriate counter. It took me about 2 hours inside the kendra to complete the entire process.