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Indian passport applicants ‘not Indian citizens’

Passport authorities, police demand bribes for travel document

By Shameen Alauddin

BANGALORE (Jan.29)—Thousands of passport applicants have filed complaints over delays in the issuance of their travel document, which involves a visit to a regional police station to verify their identity.

The minimum waiting period for a passport is 30 days, and under tatkal (immediate) scheme it is 24 hours after complete computerization of regional passport offices (RPOs).

Pritam Chakraborty applied for a passport at Kolkata Passport Office in 2011 and was repeatedly sent letters by her RPO telling her she was not an Indian citizen. Three-and-half years later, she got her passport without paying a bribe.

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