LAHORE – The new passport policy, in which Interior Minister Rehman Malik, has announced to extend the validity period of the Pakistani passport from five years to ten will not only cause dent in the government revenue but also result in identity problems for general public, sources in Directorate General of Immigration and Passport (I&P) said on Monday.

Well placed sources in the Islamabad office claimed that the decision was taken by Senate despite the opposition of Ministry of Finance and I&P office only to please the overseas Pakistanis who were demanding for quite some time.

An officer seeking anonymity said earlier, the passport seekers were paying passport fees after five years and now they would have to pay after ten years the same amount which would definitely hit the national exchequer.

Sources disclosed that it was an election stunt and would create problems for the applicants.

An officer giving example of the identity problem of a child said that if a child get his passport prepared in age of one year, his face features would have been entirely changed at the time of renewal.

He said they possessed a system Facial Identification System commonly known as Facial Engine which was meant for facial identification. He claimed that said system was already blocking certain cases of the passport seekers due to non resemblance of their features after five years. He said when the validity time would be extended performance of the system would be reduced further.

A senior officer of Passport said that tend years validity should be extended to the applicants after 18 years age. Since after that stage changes in face features take place lesser than early age.