Indian Passport is an important document which acts as a proof of your citizenship of India here as well as in abroad. This is why it is considered important to have your passport on you when you are abroad as there it serves as proof of your nationality and identity. But sometimes even after trying your best something unwanted happen. So what should be done if even after all the care and caution you end up losing or damaging your passport? What is the right course of action in such a case? Well, if these are the questions that you are trying to find an answer to, then come on, let us do some research!
What do you mean by a damaged passport?
Damaged passport is classified under two categories on the basis of the extent of damage-
- The first type includes a passport where the passport number is readable, the name is recognizable and the photo in the passport can be seen.
- The other type of damage includes a passport that is beyond recognition and hence nothing can be inferred from it.
What to do, if the passport has been lost or damaged?
In the case when you have lost or fully damaged your passport, then you should immediately report it to the nearest Indian Mission or at the nearest Visa Service Center. After that, you should apply for “Re-issue of the Passport” at the online portal and then follow-up by offering the required documents along with your passport application form.
Can you apply under the tatkal scheme for Re-issue?
In case only the booklet of your passport is damaged, but your passport number, name and photo are clearly visible then you can apply for the re-issue of your passport under the tatkal scheme. However, if that is not the case and your passport is damaged beyond recognition then you will have to go through the normal procedure as the tatkal option is not available in such cases.
What is the processing time in case of a lost/damaged passport?
If you have misplaced or damaged your passport then in such cases the normal time for the re0issuance of a passport is 8 weeks, however, in some cases, the process can even stretch for as long as 4 months.
What to do in case you have to travel urgently?
In case you have lost or damaged your passport and you have to travel to India immediately, then you can travel one-way on the basis of ‘Emergency Certificate.’ Now in order to get this emergency certificate, you will have to contact the respective mission or post that is situated in the country where you are. However, in order to travel back to abroad after you have come to India, you will need to contact the nearest passport issuing authority to get your new passport.
What documents are required to re-issue the passport?
In the case when you have lost your passport and you need to get a new one, then the below documents that you would need to submit will include-
- Proof of date of birth
- Proof of address
- A police complaint stating you have lost your passport
- An affidavit stating how your passport got damaged/lost
- A self-attested copy of the first and last 2 pages, including the ECR and non-ECR page, of your old passport.
So, this is what you should do if you have lost or damaged your Indian passport. Follow the above-mentioned steps and soon you will have your new passport! However, do remember to take care of your passport and to keep it safely and cautiously on you.