Federal Government of Pakistan has decided to launch an online system for the Pakistan Passport Office to receive applications for the renewal of Machine Readable Passports (MRPs). The new system will assist passport holders so that they can easily submit requests for passport extensions and renewals.
NADRA’s Electronic Solution to Handle Passport Renewals
According to sources within the Interior Ministry, a software system to handle the new online process is being developed. National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) has been tasked with handling and development of the new system. The system is in its final stages of development and will launch soon.
The online passport issuance system will receive a phased launch. In other words, the service will initially only be used for passport renewal for expired passports and will be limited to certain cities of the country.
Why Such a System is Sorely Needed for Pakistani Passport Holders
At the moment, Pakistan has only got 95 passport offices across the country. The lack of passport offices has been a big problem as people usually had to travel a lot and it caused long queues at the offices. The federal government has also decided to increase the number of regional offices by 73 within the coming months. The total number of regional passport offices will reach 168 by the end of 2016.
Both projects are aimed towards reducing load on the passport offices. An online system will greatly benefit the citizens who will be able to apply for passport renewal from the comfort and safety of their homes. Increase in the number of passport offices is also an appreciable step and will help many more people who are residing in remote areas of the country.
When is the Online Passport Renewal System Expected to Start?
Earlier last month, a service for home delivery of passports was launched. The new online passport renewal service will launch by March this year. The online issuance and renewal service for passports was initially expected to launch this April, but it seems that only the renewal service might get finalized by that time. Similar delays were also faced with the online CNIC application facility during its development phase.