Thursday, 11 August 2016

When date of birth in passport can be corrected without declaration by Magistrate?


Admittedly, in the instant case, the correction sought by
the petitioner is only with regard to the date and month wherein
she was born in the year 1996. The petitioner has produced the
proof of her correct date of birth i.e. Secondary School
Examination Certificate and PAN card. In considered opinion of
this court, the correction sought for by the petitioner is very
minor correction and it appears to be a bona fide error that her
date of birth was wrongly mentioned when she applied for the
passport and therefore, on the facts and in the circumstances of
the case, the respondents are not justified in refusing the
correction in the date of birth, as prayed for.
Accordingly, the writ petition is allowed. The respondents
are directed to re-issue the passport after correction in the date
of birth of the petitioner as prayed for, taking the date of birth as
mentioned in her Secondary School Examination Certificate as
conclusive without insisting upon a declaratory order from First
Class Judicial Magistrate. 
RAJASTHAN HIGH COURT
MS SHILPI VS. UNION OF INDIA & ORS.
(S.B.CIVIL WRIT PETITION NO.6598/14)


Dated:- 10.8.16
HON'BLE MR. JUSTICE SANGEET LODHA



1. By way of this writ petition, the petitioner is seeking
directions to the respondent to re-issue the passport after
necessary correction regarding her date of birth as prayed for.
2. The petitioner was issued a passport bearing No.F9840517
in the year 2006. In the passport issued, the date of birth of the
petitioner is mentioned as '10.4.96' whereas the actual date of
birth of the petitioner is '24.1.96'. The petitioner submitted the
requisites documents for re-issue of the passport with correct
date of birth, alongwith the requisite documents, which include
the date of birth certificate, Secondary School Examination
Certificate, License and PAN card.
3. The correction in the date of birth, as prayed for is refused
by the respondent on the ground that date of birth as disclosed
by the petitioner is not conforming and matching in the passport
office record.
4. Learned counsel for the petitioner submitted that the
petitioner had produced all requisite documents showing that her
correct date of birth is '24.1.96' yet, the respondent is insisting
upon a declaratory order issued by First Class Magistrate.
Learned counsel submitted that the date of birth mentioned in
the Secondary School Examination Certificate deserves to be
treated conclusive and there is absolutely no reason as to why
the respondents should insist upon a declaratory order in this
regard from First Class Judicial Magistrate. Learned counsel
submitted that as a matter of fact, the controversy involved in
the instant case, stands covered by order dated 31.10.11 passed
by this court in S.B.C.Writ Petition No.7873/10 “Piyush Chopra
vs. Union of India”.
5. On the other hand, learned counsel appearing for the
respondent submitted that as per clause 8.1 to 8.3 of the
Passport Manual, the change in date of birth could be made only
if the petitioner produces a declaratory order passed by the First
Class Judicial Magistrate after necessary inquiry and therefore,
the action of the respondents in refusing the correction, as
prayed for, cannot be faulted with.
6. It is to be noticed that in Piyush Chopra's case (supra),
while examining the legality and validity of the action of the
Passport Authority in refusing to correct the date of birth without
a declaratory order from the First Class Judicial Magistrate, this
court observed:
“ After having heard the learned counsel for the
parties and after having perused the material placed
on record, this Court is clearly of the view that in the
present case, the respondents have chosen to proceed
in a rather perfunctory manner and have put forward
the unnecessary demand of the so-called declaratory
order regarding date of birth while ignoring all other
material on record.
The petitioner has stated his date of birth as
‘07.10.1984’.His date of birth, when he was a minor,
got mentioned in his mother's passport as
‘07.11.1984’. The discrepancy has only being of a
month wherefor the petitioner has furnished repeated
explanations and in proof of his correct date of birth,
has furnished several of the documents including his
Secondary School Certificate and Driving Licence. It
has not been shown as to what cogent evidence was
available with the respondents to discard the date of
birth stated in the Secondary School Certificate. It has
also not been shown as to how the date of birth of the
petitioner as stated in his mother's passport was
taken conclusive by the respondents. Of course, the
discrepancy does appear but has not been of such a
magnitude or serious nature wherefor the petitioner is
driven to seek a declaratory order particularly when
Secondary School Certificate is available and
ordinarily, the date of birth stated therein is to be
accepted as correct.
In the given set of facts and circumstances, this
Court is unable to find any justification wherefor the
respondents have chosen to keep the application
made by the petitioner pending for all this time. In
the given fact situation, even the demand of penalty
[as indicated in the communication dated 04.05.2009
(Annex.6)] does not appear justified. It has not been
shown if the petitioner has deliberately made any
such misstatement for which he was required to be
penalised. It would rather be a travesty of justice if
the respondents are permitted to avoid issuance of
passport to the petitioner even when he has stated
the date of birth in conformity with what has been
mentioned in his academic career and in all the
related documents including the Secondary School
Certificate. Having regard to the circumstances, this
writ petition deserves to be allowed with necessary
directions to the respondents.
Accordingly, this writ petition is allowed; the
respondents are directed to process the application
made by the petitioner for issuance of passport
immediately and, for the purpose of date of birth,
shall take the date mentioned in the petitioner's
Secondary School Certificate as conclusive. Further,
the respondents are held not entitled to recover any
penalty from the petitioner and the amount of
Rs.2,000/- as deposited by the petitioner towards
penalty shall be refunded to him. The requirements of
this order shall be carried out by the respondents
within 30 days from today.”
7. Admittedly, in the instant case, the correction sought by
the petitioner is only with regard to the date and month wherein
she was born in the year 1996. The petitioner has produced the
proof of her correct date of birth i.e. Secondary School
Examination Certificate and PAN card. In considered opinion of
this court, the correction sought for by the petitioner is very
minor correction and it appears to be a bona fide error that her
date of birth was wrongly mentioned when she applied for the
passport and therefore, on the facts and in the circumstances of
the case, the respondents are not justified in refusing the
correction in the date of birth, as prayed for.
8. Accordingly, the writ petition is allowed. The respondents
are directed to re-issue the passport after correction in the date
of birth of the petitioner as prayed for, taking the date of birth as
mentioned in her Secondary School Examination Certificate as
conclusive without insisting upon a declaratory order from First
Class Judicial Magistrate. The order shall be complied with within
a period of two months from today. No order as to costs.
(SANGEET LODHA),J.

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