Sunday, December 2, 2012

Indian expatriates can avail upcoming amnesty through 14 outsourced service centres of the Indian missions

Indian expatriates wishing to avail of the benefit of the upcoming amnesty in the UAE will be facilitated through 14 outsourced service centres of the Indian missions.

The announcement was made by the Indian Embassy in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday.

The passport and visa service centres run by BLS International will collect the applications for the emergency travel certificate known as ‘outpass’, with several centres located across various emirates.

These centres will accept outpass applications during normal working hours from 8am to 6.30pm during the amnesty period of December 4 to February 3, 2013.

Those who have valid passports may approach local immigration authorities directly for regularisation of stay or exit formalities, the embassy said. Applicants for outpass will need to pay Dh60 for the emergency certificate plus Dh9 as BLS service charge. They can also avail of value added services such as typing, filling of forms, dispatch etc at the BLS centres by paying added administrative fees.

Indian Ambassador to the UAE, M.K. Lokesh, said those who want to get use of passport services can start approaching the BLS centres from today. “It is better if they start earlier though we are not anticipating any delay in providing the services. However, they need to wait till December 4 for outpass services through BLS,” he told Khaleej Times.

The envoy said the service of the Indian associations and community groups, which used to facilitate the outpass services in the previous amnesties, would be channeled for assisting the applicants to complete the formalities after they secure the outpasses.

The ambassador said the missions will also request airline authorities to give special consideration to the amnesty seekers.

Community groups like Indian Association Sharjah and Kerala Muslim Cultural Centre (KMCC) have already announced plans to support the missions in facilitating the amnesty procedures. The KMCC said it would also work with an Indian developer to assist the rehabilitation of amnesty seekers returning to Kerala.

Meanwhile, the Kerala government is sending an official delegation to the UAE to assist the Keralites seeking amnesty.

The embassy said that applicants must attach valid proof of identity with their outpass applications. This can include passport and visa copies or passport details. In case applicants do not have either a passport copy or passport details, they can submit a voter identity card, a ration card with photograph, Indian driving licence or a nativity certificate issued by their district collector or superintendent of police forwarded directly to the embassy or the consulate in Dubai.