Modernization of Passport Services in India
The Passport Seva Project is one of the largest Mission Mode projects of the Government of India under the National e-Governance Plan (NeGP). The project is being successfully executed by the Ministry of External Affairs in Public-Private-Partnership with Tata Consultancy Services as the Service Partner.
The existing infrastructure, systems and processes were found inadequate to meet the growing demand for Passport and related services. In 2013, the Government rendered about 85.17 lakh passport services in a year. This is an all time high and amounts to over threefold increase since 2000. At this rate, the Government is likely to be reaching a milestone of issuing one crore passports a year during the year 2014-15. In the first six months of this year, 42 lakh applications have been received by Passport offices in India. This does not include overseas applications. As on 30th June 2014, some 5.4 crore Indian citizens held valid passports. India today accounts for about 14% of global issuance and is placed third behind China and the United States
The Passport Seva Project was conceptualized and launched to augment and improve the delivery of passport related services to Indian citizens. The all India rollout across 23 states and 63 cities was completed swiftly by June 2012. This IT-driven Project is run with over 2,500 persons deployed from the private Service Provider and 2,500 officials from the MEA. The Project runs on the Build-Own-Operate-Transfer model wherein the initial investments are by the private partner. There is minimal investment from the Government.
[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]By Heera Lal [Public Servant( IAS) at Govt. of UP, India. Special Secretary Rural development] …