Monday, December 6, 2010

Evidence of existence

Today I realise what inspires a person like Makarand Adhikari to conceptualize Office Office and why do we really 'need' the RTI.

A Government job guarantees you a Saturday-Sunday leave, umpteen amounts of perks, incentives, housing and travel facilities and a lot more. But if you are not a Government employee and need to get a simple document issued, you have to take 'n' number of leaves, affidavits, signatures, attested copies, witnesses blah blah.

What are the important documents we need in a lifetime?
A voter's ID, a Birth certificate, an Official identity card, a Domicile certificate, a Passport, a PAN card, a Driving license and now this unique PIN that has come up - so many documents to prove that you 'exist' and 'have existed' in a said country.
Persons with lawyers in the family are indeed lucky. Because even changing an 'i' to 'ee' in your spelling requires a stamp paper and an afidavit. You have to preserve all the salary slips of the company that you work for - to show that you work there. These Govt. officials are not satisfied by a single page 'Letter of employment'

And if you are a student who constantly has been on the move throughout the country, you need a lot of patience and a lot of 'migration certificates'. Marksheets and bonafide certificates just do not suffice. Neither do hostel accomodation proofs and payslips issued by college that suggest that you have 'paid' for a course.

Who should I blame for this?
Government officials or defaulters?
All I know is, my application for a tatkaal passport ( they say it takes a week) is today exactly a month and a half old
Today it is easier to create a clone of yourself rather than fighting and proving that you are unique in existence
Strangely, the passport website does have an RTI tab...
Maybe it was included on public demand :P

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