Srinagar, Feb 25: The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Government of India has accorded special approval to the Regional Passport Office in Srinagar to hold a daylong awareness and passport-related assistance camp for Hajj aspirants 2023, officials said on Saturday.
Regional Passport Officer Srinagar (RPO) Davinder Kumar said that he applied with a request to the MEA to hold a day-long awareness cum passport-related information, and upon the approval of the request, more than 400 applicants approached the office.
“We witnessed a huge rush of Hajj aspirants earlier this week, and we preponed their application dates for the speedy process for issuance of passports after the completion of due legal formalities,” he said, adding, “The request to MEA was sent to grant approval to hold a day-long specialised camp regarding the issuance of passports which was approved.”
While many aspirants who had come from different parts of the valley to attend the camp regarding their passport issues thanked the Hajj Committee and the RPO office for holding the workshop.
On the occasion, many Hajj aspirants for 2023 said the validity of their passports is ending this year, while they are aspiring to visit the holy city for pilgrimage.
“It is a welcome step as the assistance is being provided to us to facilitate our issues and concerns related to the passport, but the issues concerning us are the validity of the passports. We are hopeful that those will be addressed,” a Hajj aspirant said.
RPO Srinagar said the concerned officers from the UT’s Hajj Committee were also called to formulate a plan to address the passport-related issues of the aspirants.
“Prior to the camp, a discussion was held with the concerned officers and it was decided that the recommendations should not be unabated and that those above 70 years of age and senior citizens should be prioritized for re-issuance of passports,” the RPO Srinagar said.
Stating that there is a lack of awareness while applying for passports, the RPO Srinagar said they along with the UT’s Hajj Committee will hold special awareness camps in the future for Hajj aspirants so that they don’t face any problems when they have to leave for the holy journey.
He further said that any applicant applying for the passport facing any issue or discomfort at his office by any of the employees can approach him directly. (KNO)
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