DSCC birth certificate: Remove hassles for passport seekers

EditorialProthom Alo illustration

The birth registration certificate that is mandatory for getting passport, is verified by the passport office from the central database of the registrar general’s office.

Government offices have memorandum of understanding (MoU) on intercommunication with the office of the registrar general for verifying information relating to this through registration numbers. But, Dhaka South City Corporation isn’t following that.

They have built such a database that doesn’t have any connection to the central database of the office of the registrar general. Though it’s not causing any problem for the DSCC or the office of the registrar general, the passport applicants are falling victim to harassment and hassles.

Earlier last year, Dhaka South City Corporation officers had kept the birth and death registration activities suspended for almost three months demanding the revenue money to be deposited in their own fund. They resumed with the registration work using their own system on 4 October last year.

As reports published in Prothom Alo, those aged below 18 years who need birth registration certificates to get passports or those who don’t have national identity cards are unable to get their passports done with birth certificates provided by the DSCC.

This problem concerning DSCC birth certificates has been going on for over ten months. And, no information can be found on exactly when this problem will be sorted.

After failing to get his child’s passport done, a resident from Dhaka South City Corporation area has had a new birth certificate issued by providing his in-laws’ address in Dhaka North City Corporation area. 

The deputy director of Keraniganj regional passport office has stated the passport office has integration with the central system and not with the DSCC. As a result the registration number of those, coming with DSCC-issued birth certificates to get their passport done, do not show up in the system.

That’s why it’s not being possible to receive their applications. Notably, birth registration numbers received from everywhere else across the country except for DSCC automatically pops up into their system, he added.

On 19 October last year the then registrar general had sent a letter to the secretary of the local government division under the local government, rural development and co-operatives ministry mentioning that the matter of getting registration done in DSCC’s own system is a breach of code. There’s no report of any remedial measures being taken from the concerning division.

Rather, DSCC in an attempt to cover up their mess had sent out a letter on 18 October last year including 22 government offices in the letter. They requested taking necessary measures to verify birth and death registration certificates using QR codes by clicking on DSCC system.

But, the software used in passport application procedure at the department of immigration and passports doesn’t have the option to scan QR codes.

Director of the e-passport project, Md Saidur Rahman told Prothom Alo, if the birth registration number isn’t included in the central system of the registrar general’s office it won’t show up in the software of the passport office.

The office of the registrar general didn’t agree to hand over their database, claiming DSCC’s own server to be unlawful. Why should the passport applicants suffer because of a dispute between two agencies or organisations of the government?

When all other government as well as autonomous organisations are connected with the registrar general’s office database, why does DSCC have objections? There’s no scope for obstinacy here.

Also Read