Nadra CNIC Nightmare - SI Block

By Sarang


I am sure most of you from Pakistan already know that the Computerized National Identity Card (CNIC) issued by Nadra on behalf of Government of Pakistan has an expiry date. If you didn't know this then i think you have never looked at your ID card carefully.

There is another thing that only a few know about CNIC... only those whose CNIC verification has been denied at the passport office, a bank, mobile SIM activation, at the airport etc. This is the mysterious SI block of the CNIC card. You find out about it when you need your CNIC the most. For example you are preparing for international travel and you urgently apply for your passport only to find out that it cannot happen until your SI block is removed by Nadra.

SI block is caused when any discrepancy is found in your data or your family tree. For example if the system finds that the CNIC number of the family head (Mother or Father) is missing or invalid in your data then this will cause an SI block. In case of a married person the CNIC of the spouse must also be submitted. Submitting the CNIC of siblings is generally optional however it become mandatory for the unmarried people whose parents are deceased and did not have CNIC. Whatever the reason maybe the bottom line is that you need to go to Nadra office and get the issue resolved. This will be done free of cost at any Nadra Swift Registration Center (NSRC).

I would strongly recommend all of you out there not to wait for someone else to tell you about the SI block of your card. Call up the Nadra helpline right now and ask them about the status of your CNIC card. It will save you a lot of frustration later when you actually need the CNIC.

My Story:

A few months back my ID card got expired and i didnt pay much attention to it. I was of the view that no one bothers about the expiry date of the ID card and i don't need to waste my time and stand in lines for renewal. I also had this at the back of my head that i hardly ever need my ID card and the places i have used it before no one ever looked at the expiry date. So the bottom line is i didn't bother about it.

So time went by like this until a couple of months back when i urgently needed to open a new back account. I was quite shocked to find out that my application cannot be processed because my CNIC has expired. I tried arguing with the bank manager but his answer was that he is just following the instruction from State Bank of Pakistan. New account cannot be opened without CNIC verification and since my CNIC was expired so it will not work.

Since i was left with no other option therefore i went to the NSRC. I later realized that the word "swift" was a misfit in the name, it was far from being swift. There was a long queue outside for the token to get inside. After waiting for a painful hour finally i payed the fee for URGENT renewal processing and got the token. Let me tell you over here that you can apply for normal process or urgent. According to Nadra the normal process takes 4 weeks whereas the urgent one takes 2 weeks.

I entered the crowded office and started waiting for my token number to appear on one of the digital counters. To cut the story short i went through the following steps:
Counter#1: Got my picture taken
Counter#2. Gave my signature sample and finger prints.
Counter#3: Misc data entry. The man at the counter asked different questions which i answered.
Counter#4: Was shown a print out of my data.

I come home after this and started waiting for 15th day. I called for the status after 15days and i was told that it is still in processing!

I was told by a friend that there is something called SI blockage due to which the cards can be delayed so i should call and confirm that this is not the case. I called back on 26th day of application and asked whether my card was SI blocked. I was told that it was not blocked and that the verification was cleared a day earlier. I was also informed that i will get my card within a week now.

I called again on 30th data (one month after the date of application). This time to my utmost surprise i was told that my card has SI block and i cannot get it until i get that resolved.

I needed my card urgently so I wanted to go and do the required processing as soon as possible. I took early off from my office and I went to the NSRC the same day thinking that it would be a few minutes fix but i was disappointed to know that i have to go through the whole process again. I had to spend more than an hour to redo all the process that was done only a month back.. counter #1, #2, #3.

At the end of that frustrating ordeal at counter#4 i was handed over a printout of my data and asked to get it attested! My jaw dropped! And a few involuntary slangs started coming out of my mouth (which i am not quite proud of). It will take me another few days to get it attested and submit it.

So my story continues... I hope it has a happy ending. For you all out there i would strongly advise to check the status of your CNIC card and make sure that it is not SI block for any reason.

Sarang Recommends:
- When are they coming for you?
- Extracts of speech by Hafez A.B Mohamed


Anonymous said...

Dont worry. Its not the end yet. Although I wish you a haapy ending. But in my case it took 4 times although I was not on SI block.

Long live Pakistan.

Sarang said...

I hope i dont break your record of 4 months :)

rehan23may said...

The card expiry occurs on your 30th, 40th, 50th or 60th birthday, so watch ot for these dates.

Sarang said...

I heard that Nadra spent a lot of money developing an image processing software which takes the picture and age etc and generates an expected time duration in which the facial features of the person will change. The expiry date is based on this time.

Come to think of it in order to sustain Nadra needs this so that people keep coming back to them and their revenue never dies down. After 10-20 years they will be done registering all the Pakistanis and the renewals will be their continuous source of income.

Anonymous said...

its ok for me to get my son nicop it took 14 months to get clear but it was fun becuse i did not need that fast but thanks when i needed i had it so i pray you get faster its was not s1 block it was may be it was but i dont think so i apply on line from canada funny question they ask give his visa info he was born canada i told then his birthcertifcate is his visa ( citizensgi ) what ever you call ok after that they asked gi them passport no i told them i cannot get pakistani passport untill i have nicop then again they said what his exipre date of visa
that was so funny i told them again he is by birth canadain so then they wrote what his birthcertifcate exppire date i thought i should kill them aff all that wrote email to chairman i wrote sir i with al those email attached and application as well documents asked him sir can you tell me does (nadra of pakistan knew when person will die i mean that how you will knew your birthcertifcate expire date lot of other stuff like passport etc then i got approval from there office ) that half story there was 14 months took me but i was just looking them how they look this it not that they did strat for my daugter too but that took 5 months to clear i explain them all proof of my son application how it was approved i told them i will farword all this ti chairman that time so i did but it was approved 6 month or so so 14mnths i think its not long tho sister is still waitting for correction almost 3 years + still got again with same mistake ......

Anonymous said...

I was born in 1967, got registered in birth record of muncipal committe office within a month after birth, got registered in 1975 as a minor and I was listed with ID on Form B, got my national ID card in 1987 with same ID number after attestation of govt. officer above 17th grade and verification of police, applied for the CNIC three times, yes three times, first when general population census gave option, second when a full scale exercise started and third after about a year when I came to know that my form containing the data has been lost by registeration office or by NADRA, finally got CNIC having life of 5 years before expiry, the card expired in 2007 when I reached at the age of 40, my current bank accounts turned dormant this year because of non transaction during last 6 months before turning dormant because I remained seriously ill last year. Inspite of the fact that Bank had record that i had submitted this CNIC on the demand of the bank when it was valid, bank had record of previous NIC on which these accounts were opened more than a decade ago. I came to know that the whole process will be repeated inspite of that there is no change in my current and permanent address, no change in my finger prints, may be some change in facial expressions (how much in 5-6 years just imagine), I have decided to ask from courts whether the govt. is right and justified in doing all this like refusing to return my deposited amounts, ceasing other rights facilities and rights which I have being a citizen of Pakistan due to the reason that my CNIC is expired. I have come to know that Mr. Rana Shamshad, an advocate has filled a petition in Lahore High court and I am trying to contact him in this regard.

Adnan said...


I am a US citizen, pretty much waiting on my CNIC so that I can get NICOP and go back to the US.

I renewed my CNIC 2 months ago, when I went to pick it up, they told me SI block, what idiots, couldn't they of told me that at the time I originally went to get it renewed.

Now, attempt no 2, been over 16 days and still SI block.

This is crap. NADRA just doesn't know how to run stuff. Their system isn't innovative, it's prehistoric. Heck in only 10 days, I got my US Passport renewed and my daughter who was born in Karachi, got her US Citizenship certificate and Passport.

All in 10 days.

This Nadra is a joke. I guarantee very soon its system will fail. And then they probably will go back to the hand written ID cards.

Anonymous said...

Dude, how on earth did you manage to get through their help line? I know I have never been able to connect to the NADRA helpline.

Anonymous said...

There are thousands of people victimized by Nadra, including me whose family is Pakistan for last six months as my son's passport cannot be processed for my CNIC is SI Blocked. I have got all the approvals from theconcerned department, there is currently no objection remaining but still nobody knows why my card is still blocked. I am in UAE and went to PK couple of time for this matter. Now I am going to file a petition as judiciary is the only hope for people like us, and nobody in Nadra will care until you take a strong action instead of just letting them ruining us. There is a news where the court took strong action against a petition .

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