Tuesday, January 16, 2007

I'm an Alien in Japan

Today successfully I became an alien in Japan by receiving the Alien registration card ;-)

The process was simple, When I came to Japan the immigration officer taken my Certificate of Eligibility and gave me a yellow slip directing me to register myself to the near by Local government administration office. The slip was carrying instructions stating the mandatory registration of Alien with in 90days of arrival at the airport. If anybody lives in Japan even with a work permit lesser than 90 days need not to be registered.

But to be noted, without Alien registration one cannot really open a Bank Account or Acquire a Japan driving license or even any other property trade in Japan. While you have your alien card, it makes more convenient of not to carry the passport everywhere but alien card.

The process of obtain this card is that, visit the local office and take a token from the vending machine installed in front of the officer’s desk. The Govt. offices in Japan are just like a private company’s corporate office, so clean. The foreigner registration cell who entertains this registration will call you for filling up an application for the registration. During your application writing they verify your passport for the VISA and expiry information. There is a requirement for 2 numbers of passport size photographs; this information was already found in the yellow slip issued by the immigration officer at the Narita Airport. They are really clamming and helpful till you complete the application form. After receiving the filled in application the officer provided me an acknowledgement paper. It was indicating the date on which I should return to the collect the Alien card. Along with it, I have also received couple of papers and a book explaining activities of the administrative office. The papers included a judicial area map of that office with all the major locations and routes found. Throughout my visit in the local administration office in Gyotoku I really felt the humble handling of people by the government officials in there. This is a branch office for the Ichikawa city administration.

I went to the same office today 16/01/2007 to collect the card, to my surprise instantly after getting my acknowledgement paper they issued the card without wasting either of our time. The card was having my photograph embedded with colorful hologram on top in a typical credit card size. The card was in white color with all the information about me and my passport alongside the expiry information about the card. I really appreciate the patient and kindness of the people in Japan’s government offices.

These local administration offices also provides cultural exchange programs, guide to woman, foreigners and local information. This offices are basically all in one sort, they register the vehicles, register the new person on the area, take care of garbage work, hanko (authorized stamp of individual, in Japan the signature is not accepted as authenticity) and even other civil works around the political limitations. Whenever somebody moves out of an area or enters to another are the person should register them in the local administration area of the respective location.

I have spotted a flyer in the office today stating 500JPY for one day Japanese class, the cultural exchange programs encourages foreigner learning and sharing cultural and cooking information with the local people.

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