Sunday, December 19, 2010

Bringing Family To Kuwait

Shields and Iron clothes are out. Bracing up for the occassion. Motivating myself to go on whatever the conditions might be, to stand up once I fall, praying immensely that May Allah give the courage for me to go on, and May HE give me success.

Ha Ha. Don't worry dear blog, I am not talking about war, but I am preparing for initiating the processing of my Family's Akaama. Every country has its own policies and procedures which look alien to us, and as is human nature we are weary of everything alien. To further complicate the already complicated is the issue of language. I understand very little arabic and the ministry officials understand very little english.

Kuwait's process of giving family visa is

1. Get a temporary visa from the ministry.
2. Have the visa stamped in the Kuwaiti embassy in Pakistan.
3. On arrival here, apply for Akama and have it stamped on the passport of the family.
4. Get the Civil ID.

Getting a Temporary Visa

This is the most important and critical step, since in this step it is determined by the ministry whether the family is really of the applicant or not. All documents are studied, checked and verified in detail by the various officials.

Before applying for this, documents should be prepared. It is highly recommended that the documents are made under the supervision of someone who knows what documents are required by the ministry. This can be done through various Photocopy shops as well. One such shop is in Farwaniya as well and the person there is Pakistan iand is very helpful. His name is Irshad and his number is 6048413. The documents that I had prepared initially were.

1. English Translation of Nikah Nama, attested by Foreign Office Pakistan.
2. Photocopy of Wife Passport.
3. Photocopy of Child's Passport.
4. Birth Certificate of child.
5. Photocopy of Urdu Nikah Nama.

From here in Kuwait.

6. Photocopy of letter from company in English and Urdu both.
7. Photocopy of my 'Amal' something document which is also known as green paper.
8. Photocopy of my Civil ID.

Incidentally no photographs were required.

Once I got these documents, I went to Pakistani Embassy in Kuwait and submitted by Nikah Nama there. Over there they made a document in Arabic verifying that the Nikah Nama is original. And they also attested it. I submitted the papers in the morning and they called me in the afternoon to collect it. They took 5 dinaars for the whole process.

Next I took that document and took to Kuwait Foreign Affairs, there I had to buy a 3 dinaars (8 Dinaars Total) stamp and they attested the same document for me. After that I took all the documents to the ministry. The location of the ministry was in Jahra for me since on Civil ID the address is Sulaibiya. Below the ministry was a photocopy and typing shop, where they created an application for my wife and child. They also arranged my documents. I think they took no more than 2 dinaars (10 Dinaars Total) for the whole process. Then I went and applied for the visa. I had to run around a little since the documents have to be verified from the various offices. At that time I kept on praying that wherever I went, they don't put something in red, since if they do, then it means that something is wrong.

Finally my papers were accepted, some comical scenes occured as well because of the language gap and I had to run up and down for the various authentications and sometimes to find the right office as well. Finally they took my papers and called me on the next working day to get the visa.

In the next working day I had to run around a little bit more, since my documents were stuck somewhere and nobody knew where they were. Finally they found the documents and I had to run once again for some more verifications. In the end they said 'Bukra Bukra' and 'finish'. And I was like what Bukra what finish. Anyways the person was able to explain to me that Bukra means tomorrow and that the visa work is finished, and you will get it tomorrow.

Next day I went there early in the morning and I had to put 3 dinaars stamps on both the visas (16 dinaars). The ministry is filled with women in Black sometimes veiled and sometimes not. I think this is an ideal example that wearing Abaya and even Veil does not stop a woman from earning.

Finally the visa was in my hands and I took a big sigh of relief and braced for the challenges ahead. The family visa is valid till 2 months from arrival, so once the family is here I started their Akama Process immediately.

Having the Visa Stamped From The Kuwait Embassy in Pakistan

Once I got the visa I was happy that within a week my family will be here but that was not to be, since Kuwait Embassy in Pakistan has its own procedures to stamp the visa.

They required medical, character certificate from the police station and a valid airline ticket to do that. Once it was ready, they informed us that the visa has not arrived from Kuwait and they required that to stamp. So they called us a week later.

For all this process I had to send 10,000 rupees, which is around 50 dinaars (66 dinaars total), since the embassy charges around 3,000 for stamping each visa and some cost is incurred on Medical as well.

Finally it was all done there and the family arrived here.

Applying For Akama

Once the family arrives here, then one has to apply for Akama or in other words Resideny Permit. Since the insurance fees was a little bit high so therefore I decided to have the Akama for a year only.

The first step for getting the Akama is the medical test, which I had done from Mustashfa Naeem. Before going there a medical card is required to be made. I had that done from the Pakistani Photocopy wala, who made the card for both wife and child. He charged 1 dinaar for it (67 dinaars)

I went to Mustashfa Naeem and bought 1 one 10 dinaar (77 dinaars total) stamp for my wife, for the child it is not required. They took blood test for the wife and x-ray as well. For the child I went to the doctor and he wrote that medical test for the child is not required. So I got his medical report there and then. They called us after 10 days to come and collect the report.

We went there after 10 days and collected the report. Then we went for Insurance. The Insurance office was within the vicinity of Mustashfa. We went there and he required the Civil ID numbers of Wife and Child. The Civil ID number can be found online by dialing 889988 and then pressing 2 and then pressing 4. Once that is done, the service asks you for entering the a number which is mentioned in the visa. Once you do that, the service tells you the Civil ID number.

All that is taken to the counter. 41 dinaars (118 dinaars) is required for the adult and 31 (149 dinaars) for the child. They give the insurance cards and a receipt there and then.

After that I took all the papers to the Ministry from where I initially got the Temporary Family Visa from. I had made the application for Akama from a photocopy centre in Farwaneya, but I still went in the photocopy centre there, to get my documents arranged.

Then I went into the ministry where my papers were checked only in one office this time, since verification and authentication had already been done. Then they asked me do deposit 200 dinaars (349 dinaars) for the akama of both the wife and child. I did that and then I brought the receipt back to the same counter. Once I deposited that, they asked me to wait for a few minutes and they gave me the passports with the Akama printed on it.

So now I have the Akama done for the family and its a relief.

In the end a few little tips.
1. For this kind of work, always go as early as possible. The ministry usually open at 7, so make sure that you are there by that time.
2. Also the language barrier might not be that difficult to cross. Just try to understand and concentrate and if you don't understand then just tell them Ma Arif, meaning I don't understand. Or say in English that I don't understand.
3. Also I didn't find long and huge lines anywhere, since in Pakistan we are used to do that, therefore this was a welcome thing.
4. Have lots of stamina and don't be lazy be prepared to run around a little and try to complete as much work in one go as possible.
5. Have your documents in order and have them arranged, since arranging them on the counter might be too much for the officials in the ministry.
6. Always carry your original Civil ID and the Green paper with you, even to places where you think that its not required.

I was a bit scared before going to the ministry but in the end, I didn't find it that difficult. It is just that they have a particular process to follow and one must respect that.

1 comment:

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