The government is focusing on facilitating customers by launching several services ranging from getting information in native language to home delivery of passports.
Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan recently inaugurated another new service in the form of the Interactive Voice Response (IVR) helpline on Thursday.
An applicant can get all information relating to passport, fees and offices across the country by dialing 9988 from his mobile phone.
This facility has been launched with the support of National Bank of Pakistan (NBP).
Initially this service is being started in five languages that are Urdu, English, Pashto, Sindhi and Seraiki. Later on, it will be extended to other languages as well. It will help the public to get information in their native language without facing communication problems.
In the first step, this service is being provided in Islamabad and Rawalpindi and will be extended to other cities later this year.
Passport Fee Collection Through Mobicash
National Bank of Pakistan and Directorate General of Immigration & Passports, in collaboration with Mobicash, have launched a unique service for ‘Passport Fee Collection’. By utilizing this service, citizens of Pakistan will be able to pay passport fee at any Mobicash outlet across the country. Further Mobicash users will be able to pay their passport fees, for renewal or new passports, from the comfort of their homes through their Mobicash Mobile Wallets.
Speaking about the ceremony, Usman Bajwa, Director General Immigration & Passports said:
This initiative is in line with Ministry of Interior’s vision of facilitating general public through continuous improvements in service delivery. This service will be initially rolled out from Rawalpindi & Islamabad at 4,200 Mobicash outlets and subsequently will be expanded to rest of the country by March 2016 through mobile payment platforms of U-Paisa & Mobile Paisa in addition to Mobicash.
Speaking about this exclusive initiative, Aniqa Afzal Sandhu, Head of Mobile Financial Services – Mobilink stated:
This first of its kind addition to our service portfolio has been made keeping in mind the hassle citizens have to go through to get their passport fees deposited. This is yet another step in utilizing our biggest branchless banking network in the country in a bid to provide innovative solutions to the growing and varying needs of our Mobile Account users.
After the signing the agreement, Azfar Jamal, EVP/Head – Payment Services & E-Banking of National Bank of Pakistan said:
National Bank has now started a new journey to bring every possible payment channel to the people of Pakistan, using the latest technologies particularly leveraging on more than 120 million mobile subscriptions across Pakistan. This service will soon be available on other Mobile Operators & Money Schemes as well.
This is just the first step and roadmap is to digitize all services related to P2G and G2P under the mandate of NBP, with an open access to all Alternate Payment Channels of Financial Industry in Pakistan.
How to Avail the Service?
To utilize this service, Mobicash mobile account users can simply dial *786# or visit the nearest Mobicash Agents. The agents will enter the required information provided by the customers into their system to automatically calculate and display complete passport fee amount. The customer will receive a confirmation SMS as a receipt of payment. Following fee deposit, customers can visit the regional passport office along with their CNIC for further processing. Service charges of PKR 100 per passport are applicable.
As of now, the ‘Passport Fee Collection’ service has been introduced in Islamabad and Rawalpindi only, however, by March 2016 it will be expanded to other cities as well.
The government recently launched the service to deliver citizens their new passports at their homes in collaboration with TCS. This service made the process of getting new passports much more convenient and economical. The option of having home delivery of passports is only available for the latest Machine Readable Passports (MRP). MRP is a relatively new Public Sector Development Program from the Government of Pakistan which requires manually issued passports and visas to be converted to machine readable and printable ones. Validity of Passports has also been increased to 10 years.
The swift and reliable passport home delivery service is available in 7 districts. The districts covered under the new project are Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore, Muzaffarabad, Peshawar, Quetta and Rawalpindi.