Oman: Easier for Indian
workers to get passport, visa services
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Expatriate Services: The Indian embassy has instructed the outsourcing
centre to put up boards prominently at all counters, detailing the services
offered, both optional and compulsory, in most vernacular languages.
REJIMON K: MUSCAT: A meeting convened at the Indian Embassy on Saturday to
discuss the problems at the recently opened outsourcing centre has come out with
positive results. The meeting was attended by Indian Embassy officials and
Indian Social Club (ISC) office bearers and convenors of ISC’s linguistic wings.
It was decided that from now onwards, to avoid fee for filling application
forms, the embassy would make the forms available at Indian Social Club offices,
its linguistic wings and at all the major companies in the Sultanate. In
addition to this, the forms will be made available online on the outsourcing
centre’s website as well.
“By making available the forms widely, which is now available only at the
centre, it will be easier for the Indians in the Sultanate to get it from other
places and fill it on their own,” PM Jabir, Community Welfare Secretary of
Indian Social Club, told Times of Oman.
“Thus, they can avoid paying RO2, the fee charged by the centre for filling the
application form. This will be a big relief for the Indians, especially the
blue-collar workers, because RO2 is always a big amount for those whose salary
ranges between RO40 and RO50.”
The centre was opened recently and there have been complaints that there are
neither enough boards showing additional charges nor enough staff to brief the
customers about the services offered by the centre, in addition to the “high
fee” being charged for some services.
Complaints raised by residents against certain services were brought to the
notice of the Indian ambassador. On the basis of the complaints, the third
meeting was held on Saturday.
Recently, the Indian ambassador had assured the media that he would look into
the grievances raised and talk to the centre’s officials to resolve them. It was
also agreed at the meeting to give instructions to the centre to put up boards
prominently at all counters detailing the services offered, both optional and
compulsory, in most vernacular languages.
“Most of the customers are illiterate and semi-illiterate blue-collar workers.
If the optional charges are not specifically mentioned in vernacular languages,
they won’t understand it and they will be spending extra money for it
unnecessarily,” Jabir noted.
The meeting has also decided to direct the centre officials to make the delivery
timings more convenient for people.
“Even though there are some logistical problems to deliver the documents earlier
than the present one, they have agreed to make it one hour early from 5.30 pm.
The earlier timings were causing trouble for the people who were coming from the
interior areas of the Sultanate,” he pointed out.
“Earlier, the passports were delivered to the applicants only. Now, anybody with
an authorisation letter from the applicant can receive the passport,” he added.
( Courtesy: http://www.timesofoman.com/