Al-Avalathi's Life (Al-Avalathi is the last Mallu to go to the Gelf)
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Posts from — March 2009

Certified True copy

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I realized the anachronism associated with “to be attested by a gazetted officer” only when I came across a certificate copy from the pre-photostat era. The copy that I saw was a typed out copy with text (EMBLEM) in place of the university emblem.

Attestation by a gazette officer is a vestige of the Raj, the times when the Remingtons and the Adler Royals ruled; and when hand-written copies were also in vogue. When Photostat machines became popular, the law makers did not take pains in changing the attestation rule. No one questioned, or nothing happened if at all someone did.

Since gazetted officers were the only govt. servants respectable through the eyes of the Raj, they were entrusted the duty of attestation.

Cut to present. With two generations post the Raj, in a nation where working for private companies or doing business no longer makes you a crook or not respectable, why continue with this age old norm? When photostat copies can create copies better than originals, is attesting by a gazetted officer still relevant? When top class scanners and printers can forge any certificate, is this procedure relevant?

Self attestation should be enough to prove the authenticity of a Photostat document, right?

So, the next time you walk into someone’s office or your neighbor house to get a document attested, realize that you are taking steps back wards into history.

Post script:Even Ajmal Kasab can get a residence certificate in Bengaluru.Head to BDA Complex,Koramangala.The Notary takes just 20 rupees to issue a certificate of residence without any documents.*

*Added later:In this case,the notary means that Mr.X took an oath under him and is attesting what Mr.X told him.(via Seema Rajan)

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March 16, 2009   24 Comments