By Divya Bhati: The Indian government is making it mandatory for passport applicants to complete the DigiLocker process starting August 5. Earlier, the regional passport office in Chennai released an official notice stating that applicants should upload the supporting documents on DigiLocker before submitting their passport application online at www.passportindia.gov.in. Now, in a notice issued by the Mumbai office, the authorities have made it compulsory for applicants who submit Aadhaar during the passport verification process to create a DigiLocker account.
With the official mandate in Mumbai and Chennai, the compulsion of creating a Digilocker account will extend nationwide. By linking Aadhaar information to the DigiLocker account, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) aims to facilitate quicker and more secure processing of passport applications.
According to the official notice, Digilocker is being mandated to minimize overall processing time and enable seamless verification of documents at the Passport Seva Kendra. “From 5 August 2023, in case applicants choose to submit Aadhaar as proof of present residential address or date of birth, it is mandatory that applicants select the DigiLocker option at the time of filing up the online application. In case applicants do not exercise the option of DigiLocker for Aadhaar at the time of online submission of the passport application, Aadhaar shall not be accepted as a valid document for proof of present address or date of birth at passport seva kendra (PSK) or post office passport seva kendras (POPSKs),” reads the notice by the Regional Passport office Mumbai.
Applicants can complete the document upload process in DigiLocker in the portal itself. Once a DigiLocker account is created, and all the documents are uploaded on the platform, applicants will not need to bring the original documents to the PSKs (Passport Seva Kendra), provided the same had been uploaded on DigiLocker.
For the unaware, DigiLocker is a digital wallet service provided by the Indian Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology. In DigiLocker, users can upload or access linked government issued documents, including driver’s license, vehicle registration certificates, and academic mark sheets linked to Aadhaar.
As for the process of opening a DigiLocker account, users must use a mobile number that is already linked to your Aadhaar. This implies that the mobile number used for registration and receiving a one-time passcode (OTP) must match the one linked with Aadhaar. Additionally, if user intend to make any changes to your DigiLocker account, such as updating your mobile number or full name, one must first update the corresponding data in your Aadhaar.