My patience was wearing thin. As I looked around, I saw mothers with 6-month old babies sitting on the floor. After some time, I too squatted on the floor – during their 50-minute lunch break. After lunch, when the single processor situation did not change, I went to some of the staff and spoke sternly. A few others in the queue accompanied me. (All were of the opinion that this is the system and nothing can be done about it.)
I asked them why they could not put an additional 1-2 people to speed up the processing. The response: “We are short of staff. In the past few years, our staff has been transferred to Surat and Bangalore, and no new people have been hired.” After a few of us raised our voices (with me leading the way), they finally got one of them to also start processing the documents and the queue split into two.
It was 3:30 pm by the time my turn came. All documents were in order. And all I had to do now was to pay the processing fees. It was then I was told that since I had not come on the specified date for Tatkal, I would have to go to the Old Passport Office and request for Tatkal there. Another wasted day loomed ahead. But we were not done for the day. I still had to pay the fees. Child’s play, right? We forget we are at the Passport office.