NEW YORK, NY(TIP): The Embassy of India in the USA has awarded the new contract for providing Visa/OCI/PIO/Renunciation of Indian Citizenship Certificate application support services to the Cox & Kings Global Services Pvt. Ltd., to be operational from May 21st, 2014.
The current Service Provider, BLS International Limited, will be closing all its operations with regard to Visa/OCI/PIO/Renunciation of Indian Citizenship Certificate support services in the evening of 20th May, 2014 at all locations in USA. Applications in person viz. ‘walk-in application” will be accepted by BLS International Ltd till the afternoon of 16th May 2014.
Only Emergency Visa applications will be accepted by BLS till forenoon of 20th May 2014. Applications sent through mail upto 13th May 2014 and reaching the BLS International Ltd. on or before 15th May 2014 will be accepted. Thereafter, applicants, who propose to send their applications by mail, may send them, so as to reach offices of the Cox & Kings Global Services Pvt. Ltd. at jurisdictional locations on or after May 21st,2014. It may also be noted that Banker’s checks/ Money order accompanying these applications are drawn in favor of the new service provider Cox & Kings Global Services Pvt. Ltd with the revised service fee.
From the 21st of May, 2014 all Visa/OCI/PIO/Renunciation of Indian Citizenship Certificate application support services will be provided by the Cox & Kings Global Services Pvt. Ltd. Applicants, who have already submitted their applications to BLS International Ltd, may check online status of their applications from BLS International Ltd website till May 20th, 2014. The status of these Pending applications will be available on the website of Cox & Kings Global Services Pvt. Ltd. from 21st May 2014 and can be tracked from their website. The website details and locations of the CKGS offices would be announced shortly.
The Indian Panorama had from time to time reported the inefficient services provided and the corrupt practices indulged in by the BLS International. We have been demanding replacement of the agency. We strongly that public will continue to suffer at the hands of BLS until the outsourcing for passport services is also not withdrawn from BLS. The sooner it is done the better. Meanwhile, various organizations and individuals have welcomed the appointment of new service providers. Many said it was a good riddance from BLS who were thoroughly incompetent and were running a den of corruption.
In a statement issued to the press, INOC Chairman George Abraham said, “INOC applauds the selection of Cox & Kings Global Services Pvt. Ltd. INTERNATIONAL to replace the BLS Services International as the new service provider for the visa/OCI/PIO/Renunciation support services with effect from May 21st, 2014. “May I take this opportunity to thank the Ministry of External Affairs for their prompt action in this regard” said George Abraham, Chairman, Indian National Overseas Congress (I), USA.
“We are gratified that Government of India has responded to our recommendation on the removal of BLS, an agency which provided inefficient and deplorable services to the Indian Diaspora and to the American public in the past several months. The community indeed can breathe a sigh of relief while hoping for improved efficiency and faster turnaround time in the future” the statement continued.
“Last February, a team headed by George Abraham along with Mr. Mohinder Singh Gilzian, Vice-President, Mr. Harbachan Singh, General Secretary, Mr. Sawaran Singh, Executive Committee Member, Mr. Juned Qazi, President of Madhya Pradesh Chapter & EC member visited the External Affairs Ministry and submitted a memorandum and met and lobbied with MoS. Shri E. Ahamed and Mos. Mrs. Preneet Kaur for a change of the service provider. Our efforts were in support of the Ambassador D.M. Mulay, the Consul General in New York who had already recommended the termination of the contract with BLS.
“In our letter to Hon. Salman Khurshid. Union Minister for External Affairs said the following: “unfortunately, the atmosphere has deteriorated so badly that travelers often cannot travel on due dates of travel, due to documents being lost or misplaced and most of the time no timely response is received from them. Chronic delays are the order of the day and the whole operation is so disorganized and in disarrays that only some people seem to receive satisfactory services. The situation is so grave that we believe that your kind personal intervention is now necessary to provide appropriate assistance to the Consulate-General so that he can solve this well-known prevailing problem”.