Explained: How to apply for your Passport

Applying for a passport in India online: What you need to know, explained in real simple language.

As you may be knowing, since you are reading this online, presumably, you can apply for a passport online and finish the main formalities before presenting yourself to the nearest Passport Seva Kendra.

It all looks so intimidating, people say. How can I know where to go, what to download, and how to fill and save and submit?

Well, relax, here I have tried to make it as simple as possible J

The first step is to locate the website!

Just type passport in Google search and viola… here it is, or click on the link here: https://portal1.passportindia.gov.in/AppOnlineProject/welcomeLink

This is how it looks [as of today]

You need to register here if you are a new user, or login if you have applied here earlier. If you have forgotten your password, relax, they will send you a link to your email that you must use within two hours of your request, to change your password.

Once you log in, you must download the passport application form which is a pdf document. For this you need to do the following:

Online Form Submission

Step 1    Register through the Passport Seva Online Portal. (Click on “Register” link under the Apply section on the Home Page).

Step 2    Login to the Passport Seva Online Portal with the registered Login Id.

Step 3    Click “Apply for Fresh Passport/Re-issue of Passport” link.

Step 4    Fill in the required details in the form and submit.

Which form, you may ask!?

The form is a pdf which has blanks which you can fill is.

Download it to your PC from the link given on the website https://portal1.passportindia.gov.in/AppOnlineProject/online/downloadEFormStatic

Choose the form which applies to you, either fresh, or Diplomatic etc as shown below

Version 2 is the one available after 22nd August 2014 [now] and since I had filled version 1 a few months before, I had to copy paste from that pdf to this new one which I downloaded today the 29th of August 2014.

You need to fill in all the details accurately on your PC using adobe acrobat which is a free program for opening and editing this pdf file.

You can then save the pdf in the name of the person whose application it is or any file name of your choice. All your data will be safe in it, and you can even edit it at a later date if needed.


Once you have filled all the data in the pdf, you will need to go to the bottom of the pdf and click on the button shown above, the VALIDATE AND SAVE.

This will save your data in a file called xml. This is the file that you will need to upload when you apply online.



Note: Before uploading e-Form XML, please ensure that the XML has been generated using a compatible version of Adobe Reader (9 or above). We shall not be able to service your request in case the generated XML (from filled e-Form) is found to be tampered in anyway.


Once your xml has been uploaded, and you have confirmed the contents, clock ok and viola!

You will get this message…..


Your form has been submitted successfully.

Your Application Reference Number(ARN) is: 14-xyz1247980

Top of Form

Bottom of Form

 Pay and Schedule Appointment

Top of Form

Bottom of Form

 Print Application Receipt

Top of Form

Bottom of Form

 Upload Supporting Documents




The availability of appointments at the PSK is shown as below:

Appointment Availability #

RPO Mumbai

PSK Malad

Appointment available for 10/09/2014

PSK Lower Parel

Appointment available for 12/09/2014

PSK Andheri

Appointment available for 16/09/2014

Earliest appointment availability date is as per pool of normal appointment quota. However appointments against cancellation may become available prior to the displayed date.





So you can select the payment option you want as shown:



If you take too long to complete the payment [more than five minutes!], as it happened with me, you will get this message!


Now where is the ‘Schedule appointment’ link?? It is the one which says: View Saved/Submitted Applications! If only they would mention that in the first place!

Anyway, go there and select the application for which you have made the payment and wish to take an appointment.

It will show the earliest date available, and you have to select that. There is no option to select a date of your choice.



Once you book the appointment, you can print an application receipt and take it with you when you go to the PSK at the time selected.

Have fun applying for a passport and do let me know if you encountered any problems, or if this post helped you J

Thanks for reading!

Doctor, cricketer, engineer still top careers for urban kids: 7-city survey

What do our kids want to become these days?

Doctor, cricketer, engineer still top careers for urban kids: 7-city survey

 Aug 09 2014 : The Times of India (Mumbai)

Mumbai Children Are Most Open To Becoming Entrepreneurs

The country’s young minds are still preparing to be doctors, cricketers and engineers–the traditional career options for generations. A recent seven-city survey , based on the responses of 65,000 children aged between three and 12 years, shows that almost 29% of them dreamt of becoming a doctor when they grow up.

At 15.8%, cricket was [surprisingly] the second most preferred profession followed by engineering (11.6%), teaching (9.2%) and the police force or defence services (8.2%). The survey was conducted in Mumbai, New Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru, Pune and Hyderabad.


While being a doctor was as popular as being a cricketer among boys (23%), it was a clear choice for girls at 36% of the total respondents. At 14%, teaching was the second most preferred option.

Children chose the arts (7%) and government service (3%) over conventional career choices such as pilot (2%), scientist (2%) astronaut (1%) and law (1%). “While interest in government services and arts is a positive story, decline in takers for sciences indicates that we must promote research and pure sciences more. Everyone needs to know that there is more to sciences than just engineering and medicine,” said Jyoti Thakur, vice-principal, Jai Hind College, Churchgate.

Among all the seven cities, Mumbai registered the highest percentage of children wanting to be entrepreneurs. While the national average was 3%, in Mumbai, more than 11% of the children said they wanted to become entrepreneurs. Mumbai included 11,253 of the total respondents. Mumbai’s boys preferred cricket (25.2%) to medicine (18.4%).

The survey also asked parents whether they were preparing to financially support the child’s dream. As many as 81% of them admitted to not knowing what the cost of higher education would be in future. According to the survey, conducted by Aviva Life Insurance, parents save around Rs 4.7 lakh for the child’s higher education even as the cost is expected to be much higher.

Financial experts, though, say the trend is changing and parents are beginning to save ahead of time. “For the past two years, a lot of parents of children sometimes as young as three are also setting their aim on specific universities abroad and beginning to save accordingly. The trend is only picking up now and is expected to grow rapidly, ” said Prasad Chitre who specializes in financial planning for education.

Vinamrata.Borwankar @timesgroup.com



Dr. Mathew who has graduated from the most sought after Medical College in Mumbai, Seth G. S. Medical College, feels that if the motive for becoming a Doctor is to heal people then it is a good thing for society.

Gritty residents save 429 acres of mangroves

Real education is all about making a difference in the real world. Here is what some of us have done in North Mumbai in the last few years. 

Gritty residents save 429 acres of mangroves

Aug 02 2014 : The Times of India (Mumbai)

The sight of thick mangroves stretching for kilometres from Dahisar to Gorai may appear commonplace. However, behind their lushness is a tale of extraordinary grit exhibited by a handful of ordinary residents of the area who, braving threats for years, battled in courts and outside to restore the green lungs from the brink of near ruination.


Figure 1 Ordinary residents faced up to the powerful lobby destroying mangroves and won

The reclaimed mangroves, spread over 429 acres, had fallen victim about five years ago to the avarice of a builder.
Transgressing a Supreme Court order, he began cutting the trees down and pouring debris on them. The rampant damage created six large bald patches on the land. Further destruction was imminent, had a group of residents of New Link Road not stood up and begun a fight. Their collective effort forced the government to act and prompted the Supreme Court to order the restoration of the mangroves. Left untouched for years and nursed by nature, the area is today returning to life.

“I would daily go to the land for morning walks, but I didn’t know many of the others who came there. It was the mangroves that got us talking. Next thing we knew we were together fighting to save them,” remembers Harishchandra Pande, looking out at the foliage from his sixth-floor window. He points to patches of green that seem like grass but are mangroves growing back.

Pande had moved into his house on New Link Road in 2001 and the most beautiful part of it then, he says, was the view. In 2009, when labourers began chopping the mangroves, he was disturbed. On his morning walks, he realized so were many others like David Suse. Pande filed a complaint with the MHB Colony police, but nothing happened. Soon debris was found dumped on the plot and a ring road was created around the mangroves. It was then that residents realised something sinister was underway–the land was being reclaimed.

Alarmed, the residents filed complaints with the BMC and the suburban collector’s office. While local ward officer P R Masurkar surveyed the land and reported illegal debris dumping and mangrove-felling, the collector’s office remained mum. Meanwhile, the residents started receiving threats, nearly daily.

A core team of residents was formed and inquiries made. The mangroves, it was discovered then, was notified as a protected forest in 1998. The 429 acres, the residents realized, was allotted to a family in the 1950s who cultivated salt till the 1980s. The termination of saltpan activities allowed lush mangroves to grow. In 2006, a builder, Jayesh Shah, obtained power of attorney from the family and approached the SC, seeking permission to restart saltpan activities. In 2009, he was granted permission on the ground that mangroves would not be destroyed. But that is precisely what happened. In 2010, the residents intervened in the matter along with BEAG, informing the SC about its order’s violation. They went back to the court later and it directed principal judge M Tahiliyani of sessions court to submit a report.
In 2011, the SC reversed its order that allowed saltpan activities and directed the builder to restore the area. When he refused to do so, the court asked the collector to clear the debris, attach the builder’s properties, freeze his accounts and recover Rs 1.17 crore.

Nearly 85% of the debris was removed by 2012. The remainder could not be taken away because it would have led to mass destruction of the mangroves. Untouched by human hands, the area has been nursed back to health by nature.


This is a heart-warming story that holds out hope for Mumbai.
Concerted efforts by determined individuals, if supported even by a few in the administration, can turn things around. We hope this serves as an example for other neighbourhoods where things may look bad right now.


www.newlinkroad.wordpress.com has more details on this and many other issues we can tackle as citizens of Mumbai, or for that matter anywhere you stay.