A lot of visitors to my passport application article have been asking me about the police verification process. Below are the steps that I took to complete my police verification. Some disclaimers:
- The verification was done in May 2013 and the process may change in future.
- The verification was conducted in Mumbai. Process for other police stations may be completely different. Even within Mumbai each local police station acts independent of the other.
- The verification was for a re-issue of passport. For fresh applications, the verification process may be different.
A police constable visited my house within 2 weeks of the receiving the passport. My application was put for post verification. Luckily, it being a Saturday, I was at home. Later I came to know that Mumbai police allows one to track the application status on their website. Police verification will not be initiated unless your file shows up on Mumbai police website. There is no point in visiting your local police station unless the details are updated on Mumbai police website. The local police station will not be of any help. Calling them is also of no use as generally the information that is provided over phone is to visit the local police station for further inquiry. The police will not entertain any documents from you unless a police constable has visited your house and verified the details.
The first step to police verification is a police constable visiting your residence. It is important that you are present personally to sign the verification documents. In case that is not possible, at least make sure that the residence is not locked and there is some family member available to provide all the details to the police constable. The police will also ask some neighbours to sign the verification form. So make sure the neighbours are available. They may or may not be the same references that you gave in the passport application form. No documents are collected by the police. They ask you to come with all documents along with 2 photocopies and 2 passport size photographs.
While the passport website says that you can submit the same set of documents to police that you submitted for your passport verification, it may not work all the time. The police constable who came to my residence wanted me to carry my Ration card, Electricity and Telephone bills (1 year old and current), Voters ID card and whole bunch of other documents even if these documents were not in my name. What he told me is that police verification (unlike passport application) is not a documentary process. What it means is that police should be satisfied about your identity as well as about your residence proof for past 1 year. The documents that you submit add weight to your cause but may not necessarily mean that police will approve your application. The police may make inquiry with your neighbours, building watchmen and others to ascertain whether you are living at the current residence for past 12+ months. Since it is easy to produce a 12 month bank statement with current address, the police does not give it much importance. Here are the list of documents that I submitted for my verification
- Old Passport copy
- Electricity and Telephone Bills (1 year old and current). Not in my name.
- A letter from my building society stating the period of stay in the building.
- Ration Card copy
- Aadhar Card copy
- Voter ID Card
- PAN Card
- 2 passport size photographs
Statements of Bank account downloaded from Net banking are not accepted by police. Also e-statements of utility bills are also not acceptable.
After a few weeks of submitting the documents, the status on the Mumbai police website will show an Outward Date, which means that the documents have been sent to central office of Mumbai police. If all documents are in order, the verification is updated with the passport office.