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Passports in Hindi too, announces Sushma Swaraj

Replying to a separate query on twitter, Swaraj said every PIO (person of Indian-origin) cards has to be converted to OCI (Overseas Citizenship of India) cards, saying it is mandatory.”We have received complaints that passports are issued only in English”.External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Friday announced that henceforth all passports will be in English and Hindi languages, not just in English.Personal details in passports are now printed only in English.To help people in rural areas who don’t have PAN cards, the government said ration cards could be submitted while applying for Tatkal passports.To mark the completion of 50 years of the Passport Act, 1967, the Foreign Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and MOS (IC) Communications Manoj Sinha also launched a commemorative stamp today.”There has, of late, been a rise in the number of applications for passports from elderly people as, unlike in the past, many of them want to travel overseas, mostly to meet their children who are studying or working in foreign countries. And this will be applicable from tomorrow”, she announced. Arab countries have passport in Arabic, Germany makes it in German and Russia makes it in Russian.Police verification, a major part of the passport issuing process, takes time, the minister pointed out. So you will receive passports in Hindi and English.After studying passport rules, she realised that some norms were “unnecessary, obsolete or impractical”.Swaraj said her ministry had teamed up with that of Sinha’s to utilise the Head Post Offices as Post Office Passport Seva Kendras (POPSK) in order to extend passport services on a larger scale.”We have made a decision to set up 235 POPSKs in two phases – 86 in Phase-I and 149 in Phase-II”.