Islamabad residents get e-passport facility

ISLAMABAD-The Directorate General of Immigration and Passports on Saturday rolled out online renewal of passports facility countrywide and e-passports for the residents of Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) besides establishing 30 passport processing counters at NADRA centres.
The passport processing counters have been established at different registration centers of National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) in those areas where facility of passport issuance was not available. Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah Khan inaugurated all these facilities at a launching ceremony held at the headquarters of Passport Office. Director General of Immigration and Passports Yawar Hussain and Chairman NADRA Tariq Malik were also present on the occasion.
Speaking on the occasion, the interior minister claimed that they had succeeded in developing a “robust and reliable” passport system in the country, which complied with international standards. “The system is crucial in providing secure travel documents to citizens and facilitating visa-free travel.”
The minister said the introduction of e-passports, an online passport renewal system within the country and passport processing counters would empower the citizens, and streamline their travel, contributing to overall development of the country. “Efforts are being made to strengthen partnerships and cooperation with other countries to enhance facilitation,” he added.
Rana Sanaullah said that 30 passport processing counters had been established in NADRA offices located in areas where dedicated passport offices were not available. The minister said that they aimed to enhance passport security and provide convenience to citizens. The e-passport facility incorporates state-of-the-art security features, such as biometric data and digital signatures, effectively reducing the risks of passport fraud and identity theft,” he said. This, in turn, will instill greater confidence in our passport system, he added.
The interior minister said the in-country online passport renewal system would allow citizens to renew their passports online, eliminating the need for multiple visits to passport offices. Through the dedicated web portal, applicants can submit their applications, upload required documents, and track the progress of their applications, he added.
He said under the current passport policy, each district was required to have a passport office, which incurred significant costs of approximately 30 million rupees, including land acquisition, site preparation, human resources, furniture, and technology infrastructure.
In view of this, he added, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has taken the decision to establish passport processing counters under one roof at NADRA centers.

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