Srinagar office to decide on Mehbooba Mufti's request for passport: Centre to Delhi HC

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New Delhi, Mar 3: The Centre on Friday told the Delhi High Court that the Passport Authority in Srinagar has been directed to take a fresh decision on Peoples Democratic Party President and former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti's request for issuance of passport.

A single-judge bench of Justice Prathiba M. Singh was hearing Mehbooba Mufti's petition seeking quick decision on her appeal challenging the rejection of her application for renewal of the passport. The PDP chief had, in 2020, approached Srinagar passport office for renewal, but was denied it. She then moved the Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh High Court.

In 2021, the High Court dismissed her petition saying that the scope of the court in the matter of grant or otherwise of passport in favour of an individual is very limited as it can only direct the authorities concerned to expeditiously consider the case of an individual in the light of the mandate of the scheme of law governing the subject. During the hearing in the Delhi High Court on Friday, advocate Kirtiman Singh, appearing for the Centre, informed the court that a decision was taken on Thursday on her appeal and the matter has been remanded to the Srinagar passport office.

Noting that the matter has been remanded back to the regional passport officer after almost a two-year delay since the rejection of her application, the judge directed the officer to take the decision expeditiously.

Justice Singh ordered: "Let the concerned passport officer take a decision within three months. The petition is disposed of."

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