Hyderabad Police has distributed 200 iPads with 3G connectivity to the verification officers of the Special Branch for speedy verification of passport personal particulars forms (PPFs).
All the verification officers and the supervisory officers have been trained to use the iPads and the technology required for speedy verification of PPFs, a release issued by the city police said. Hyderabad Police receive more than one lakh passport applications for verification every year and so far the process used to be done mostly manually.
The Passport Verification Cell, which is the nodal agency in the City Police, obtains the PPFs through a messenger, sorts them out manually as per the zones and the police stations in the city and distribute them to the field officers for verification. The field officers also send the verified PPFs through the messenger to the PV Cell for uploading to the Regional Passport Officer, it said.
"Matching of the PPFs with intelligence reports also take considerable time leading to delays. With the introduction of technology, these delays are expected to be reduced considerably, thereby reducing the time required for verification," the release said.
Average time taken for passport verification was 61 days in 2012, 35 days in 2013 and 27 in the last quarter of 2014. "Due to the special drive taken up from December 2014, there was tremendous improvement in passport verification. In January, 2015 average time was reduced to 19 days, and further reduced to 13 days in February," the release said.
With the new technology, time taken for verification will be reduced further, the release said, adding that it would ensure greater sense of accountability and transparency amongst the Field Officers coupled with expeditious disposal and submission of Police Verification Reports.
"The maximum duration of one week is fixed to the Field Officer to complete the verification. The applicants are also requested to remain available at least for three days after filing the application with RPO as most of the enquiries are completed within three days," the release added.