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20 January, 2018 12:54:03 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 20 January, 2018 11:40:44 AM
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Govt to procure 50 lakh passport books soon

Delay in introducing e-passport prompts DIP move
DEEPAK ACHARJEE
Govt to procure 50 lakh passport books soon

The government is going to purchase more than 50 lakh passport books and 55 lakh passport covers from a UK company at Tk 94.97 crore due to delay in introducing e-passport. If the Department of Immigration and Passport (DIP) is unable to procure the passport-books and covers within the shortest possible time, it may create a passport crisis in the near future, sources in DIP said. At present, there are 1,538,531 passport-books in the DIP's stock, the sources added. For purchasing passport-books and covers from De La Rue, the Security Service Division of the home ministry has prepared a proposal, which would be placed at the next meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Purchase, seeking its approval.

Quoting the Director General of DIP, Maj Gen Md Masud Rezwan, the secretary of the Security Service Division, Farid Uddin Ahmed Chowdhury, said in the proposal that there are only 1,538,531 passport-books that will be able meet the demand of the next three months. That is why they have to purchase the books and covers, he added.

Earlier, the DIP signed an agreement with the UK passport manufacturing company De La Rue to supply 1.50 crore passport books and 1.50 crore covers, and the company has so far supplied 14,778,970 books.

“Of the supplied passport books, the DIP has provided 13,340,482 to passport-holders till date, leaving 14,38,488 in stock,” says the proposal to be placed before the cabinet committee on purchase.

The DIP, however, has a total of 1,538,531 passport books in stock with its previous stock, sources in the DIP said last week. Sources in DIP said the authorities concerned are delaying introducing the much-talked-about e-passport and that is why they are purchasing 50 lakh books soon.

Already, the DIP has undertaken a Tk 5,000 crore e-passport project—Tk 2,700 crore for producing three crore books and Tk 2,300 crore for equipment, machinery and software networking. In this regard, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed with a German company during the visit of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to Germany in February last year.

The Prime Minister wants to implement the “introduction of e-passport project” worth Tk 5,000 crore by the German company under government-to-government (G to G) deal, but the home ministry and DIP favour open tender, the sources added. According to the proposal, a passport booklet factory will be set up in Dhaka’s Uttara, where a six-storied printing building of DIP is being built.

DIP sources said they have issued 1.76 crore MRPs till date since these were introduced in April 2010. At least 118 countries, including India (only for diplomats and officials), China, Malaysia and the UAE, have introduced e-passports.

IK

 

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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