Today I had a visit at the Foreign Registration Office. It is actually the second time I’m at this office, as I was here also last year. At this office, all officers who plan to stay in India for more than 180 days have to register within 14 days. And again there are a lot of documents that has to be copied and filled. I do remember from my notes of last year (not sure why it is not a blog post) that everything went quite smoothly. From my notes I wrote that everything was done quite smoothly and that I had my permission within one day. The only thing I thought about that could have been done different that time was that I could have prepared more from Norway if I had known about the process and what was actually required. We used an agent that time, and that really helped and made everything very easy.
There was one thing that stroke me as a bit strange that time was that my permanent address was noted as the hotel where I stayed at that time. I asked if I had to change this when I moved into the flat, but the answer I got was that that was no need for that. This time, I’m about to move from one flat to another, and I got told that I would need the lease agreement for the new flat that I will move into. That really sounds strange to me, as I haven’t even signed the contract yet.
When I came to the office to meet my agent, things got really a bit screwed up. The agent was there at time and place, but when I got to the officer, they asked for some more documentation… Well, given that this is India, it is maybe not a big surprise that they ask for more documents. That is something they like to do here. But it was really a surprise to me that the agent didn’t know about this! It seems like my case is what they call re-enter case, while last year it was an enter case. For re-enter they would ask for more. In my case they asked for a document that proved that I had paid my tax last year. Luckily I had my laptop with me, and here I had a scanned version of that document! Yes, I scan every document I receive in India and store it. So we had to go to a cybershop and then I had to send it to my Hotmail account and get it printed. And of course on the way back to the office, the whole Mumbai monsoon started on its worst. And when I was back, I off course had jumped from first to last in the queue.
But the problems didn’t stop there. I went to the right officer and get my documents reviewed. She then gave me a receipt and asked me to take that to the cashier and pay. I did pay it and got a stamp in my FRRO-book. This is a special book that you have to carry with you together with your passport. I asked that lady a number of times if I was done now. She said yes every time. Then I went outside and looked for my agent. He was not there. “Fine”, I thought. He has probably left then, as he thinks I’m done. I went outside and left. One hour after, the agent called me and asked where I was! Apparently, I should have gone back to the first officer and also got something in my passport. He said that he was still waiting for me and wondered where I was. Off course I got a little bit pissed about this. If he really waited for me, why did he “hide” somewhere where I could not see him, and manage to just pass him on my way out? The sad part is that it seems that I’m the one who have to pay the price for the sloppy work of the agent, and I have to go back to the office again some other time.
To be continued…
The following documents are needed when you go to the FRRO office:
|The following documents are required for Registration –
a) Original valid Passport and Visa.
Talk to you soon!