Pakistanis Wait For New Passports; Here’s Why

New Delhi: Many Pakistani citizens have put their travel plans on hold for a rather strange reason. The country is facing a lamination paper shortage.

Apparently there is a massive scarcity of lamination paper in the neighbouring country that has led to a nationwide shortage of travel document. Thousands who need to fly out of the country for study, work, or leisure are now struggling to obtain the green-coloured book with no end to their ordeal in sight, a report by the Express Tribune said.

Students in Pakistan are stuck at home with approved visas to pursue degrees in the UK or Italy, waiting for their passports to arrive. Many are scared the endless wait might lead to them losing this opportunity, threatening to shatter their aspirations.

The country, which imports lamination papers from France, faced a similar delay in printing in 2013 due to the Directorate General of Immigration & Passports (DGI&P) owing money to printers and a lack of lamination papers, the report said.

Qadir Yar Tiwana, the Director General for Media of the Ministry of Interior, assured that the government was trying to end the crisis as soon as possible. “The situation will soon be under control and passport issuance will continue as normal,” he was quoted as saying.

Many residents complained of receiving messages from the DGI&P telling them their passport was ready for pickup but when they reached the passport office they were turned away.

It seems people will have to wait for another month or more for their passports. A senior officer Peshawar passport office, told The Express Tribune, that they could presently only process 12 to 13 passports per day as compared to 3,000 to 4,000 passports per day earlier.


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