Monday, 6 February, 2023
E-paper

Grant 10-year passport tenure for senior citizens

In the month of October 2022, our passports expired, so I applied for new passports for me and my wife. As I applied online for the renewal of our passports, I was surprised to see that my passport was renewed for five years while my wife’s passport was for ten years. I fail to understand why such a decision has been taken by the Department of Immigration and Passports.

I asked a journalist friend of mine who mostly covers the Passport and Immigration department’s activities why this difference and he had no answer. Those who apply for passports may know the hassles that one must cross before getting a new passport or a renewed one. Still, you can find lots of brokers standing in queues to provide help to the applicants.

Why does the authority think that a senior person (65) would not live after he attains age 70. I read an article today written by a former senior bureaucrat on this subject. He has rightly pointed out the problems and suggested a remedy. But I am certain his suggestion would go to deaf ears.

I think the authority should issue passports to senior citizens for 10 years to avoid visiting the ever-crowded passport office and face many hassles. There is hardly any people to help. Even if you seek help from the uniformed people, they simply ask them to read the instructions on the board. I urge the government to take this issue seriously and grant 10 years tenure for senior citizens. 

 

Md Shafiqul Karim,a senior citizen of Dhaka