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E-Governance: Here's how you can apply for birth certificate, death certificate and passport online

03:16 PM Aug 07, 2020 | FPJ Web Desk

The last couple of months have been quite a challenge for the Registrar of Births and Deaths since they mentioned seeing a drop in the fatalities with civic bodies struggling to update data due to Covid-19 lockdown. The most significant reasons for this could be the lockdown, that had a majority of the population in self-quarantine reducing the number of accidents on the roads. Another reason was the lack of staff which made it troublesome to handle all the documentation that was coming through their offices.

The officials in Jaipur and Indore admitted that their database might not represent complete records of deaths in the respective cities as the records could not be looked after properly, due to lockdown.

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In India, it is mandatory under the law, as per the Registration of Births & Deaths Act, 1969 to register every death with the concerned State or Union Territory Government within 21 days of its occurrence.

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Registration of deaths

There are many reasons for this registration, but the most significant ones are:

● to register death to prove the time and date of death

● to establish the fact of death for relieving the individual from social, legal and official obligations

● to enable settlement of property inheritance

● to authorise the family to collect insurance and other benefits.

If the death has taken place at home, it is the responsibility of the head of the family or any other family member to report the same within the time mentioned at the sub-registrars.

Delay in registering the death

1. People can report and register a death post 21 days, but within 30 days of its occurrence by paying a late fee.

2. Death reported more than a month, but within a year of its occurrence can be registered, only with the written permission of the registrar.

3. Deaths reported more than a year after their occurrence can be registered by an order made by the area magistrate, ie. SDM, or the first-class magistrate, or a presidency magistrate, post the payment of Rs 10 late fee (which might vary depending on the Indian State).

Applying for a death certificate

Applicants can apply for a death certificate through the death certificate website. The website only coordinates the process of getting a birth certificate. Much like all offices, the death certificate website coordinates with the Registrar of Births and Deaths to provide the death certificate. It makes the process simpler by providing a list of all the documents needed, readily available.

If an applicant has any questions about the process, they can go through the FAQ section or get in touch with the backend team who would be more than happy to assist with the process.

Additionally, applicants can coordinate the entire process by travelling to the office. Many do prefer this approach, although it takes more time but is easy to handle since you are coordinating with another individual. This is the best approach for all the applicants who are not tech-savvy to get through the process online.

What are the benefits of using the birth certificate website?

There was a time when the hospital where the child was born applied for their birth certificates. However, parents have about 21 days within when they can choose to apply for the birth certificate themselves. Since they have time and a more than a reasonable deadline, they wait for a bit and work on a couple of other requirements before beginning the birth certificate process. If the hospital has not applied for the birth certificate themselves, the parents can handle the process either in person or through the website.

While the website does provide a faster approach to getting a birth certificate, the biggest issue that applicants face is that the general population might not be capable of handling the process through the website.

Why is the birth certificate website a better option than travelling to the office?

Other than assisting with the registration of birth certificates, the website also has a couple of other benefits. People can rectify errors and typos on their birth certificates through the website. A process that would have taken ages were it handled through any other platform. Additionally, all forms, documents, and general information about this process are put up on the website too make the process easier for the applicants.

Applying for a new certificate

Applicants can use the website to apply for a duplicate birth certificate if they misplaced the original one, which something that comes in quite handy since the office takes a couple of days to process the documentation and calls the applicant back on a different date. If this is done on the website, the applicant can get through the process without taking too much trouble, and can just go to the office on the day of collecting the certificate or ask them to mail it to their postal address.

Providing additional information

When it comes to the office, people have to call on the phone numbers to speak to a representative about the process of getting a birth certificate. They can also ask them about the documents needed for the process, but since the number is a public one, the phone lines might always be busy and getting in touch with someone can get quite challenging. Additionally, travelling to the office can take longer than most people would like since it would need another trip to submit the necessary documents.

What are some of the details relating to the Indian passport process?

The Indian passport system is one of the easiest one to apply for through the new online system created by the Indian Government. It made the entire process simpler for the people generally spending hours waiting around at the office or had to make multiple trips since they did not have all their documents or certificates with them. The website solved this entire issue by allowing people to handle it at their convenience. Furthermore, applicants could access the online portal from any part of the world, allowing people who were putting off the system since it was just inconvenient.

Costing of the Indian passport

There are multiple types of passports, and people can apply for any of them, however, the most common one provided to people is the ordinary passport with 36 pages. People can make changes to the passport during the passport application process; if they travel a lot, they can choose to get one with some more pages.

When it comes to Indian Passport's, they usually cost between the price range of:

● Adult (36 pages): ₹1,500

● Adult (60 pages): ₹2,000

● Minor (36 pages): ₹1,000

The standard passport contains 36 pages, but frequent travellers can opt for a passport containing 60 pages. Early passports, including some issued between 1997 and 2000, were handwritten with the basic 20-year validity. These passports were later ruled invalid by the Indian Government and holders were forced to replace them with machine-readable versions, valid for ten years due to ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization) regulations.

While the application process for most passports takes between a month to sixty days, there is the option of paying a little extra and applying for a tatkal passport.

All the information mentioned on the passport application forms and the documents submitted along with it have to match, otherwise, there could be issues with the verification process.

Details about the Indian passport

Indian passports have a deep bluish cover with golden printing on them. The Emblem of India is emblazoned in the centre of the front cover with the words "भारत गणराज्य" in Devanagari and "Republic of India" inscribed below the Emblem whereas "पासपोर्ट" in Devanagari and "Passport" in English is inscribed above the emblem. The text of Indian Passport is printed in both Hindi and English, two official languages of India.

India issued about 12 million passports, a number exceeded only by China and the United States. Approximately 65 million Indians held valid passports as of the end of 2015.

If applicants have any questions about the passport process, they can get them answered on the website itself. Additionally, the website provides information about the forms to be submitted and the process of submitting them. It allows for everything to be uploaded in one go, making for a simple and easy system.

However, the passport system does require the applicants to visit the office to get their fingerprints scanned, which is not something that can be done through the website. After the verification of all the information, the passport is mailed to the house based on the information provided on the forms.

Having someone to gather all this information through and coordinate with can get quite the blessing and would be a massive help. Get in touch with the phone numbers on the website or use the contact form to send them an email. They would get back at the soonest and provide all the information that one could need.

Currently, almost 25% of all Indian births are not registered. These children will have to live their lives without proper facts on when, how, where and what time they were born. The birth certificate website is working on reducing this number since birth certificates are the right of every Indian citizen.

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