Woo hoo!!! - I am finally posting after a gap of 14 months.
I wanted to post my Indian passport renewal experience. Before the renewal process I did quite a research on the web to learn about others' experiences and I want to share mine now.
I had been planning to get my passport renewed since Jan 2008, and being a procrastinator that I am, I pushed it to the last minute. The passport was expiring end of Sep 2008 and I had travel planned to India in last week of September. Finally I mailed in my application to the Indian Consulate in New York in Aug 3rd week by USPS priority mail with delivery confirmation. The Consulate received the application on Aug 22nd and I received the renewed passport on Sep 6th. They turned it around in 9 business days - not bad at all. In between I placed two calls to the number provided for status updates on the Consulate's website. The lady who answered the phone call was nice enough to answer all my questions. First call, she told me that the passport is being processed and the new one should be re-issued in 2-3 days. Second call she told me that the passport was dispatched and provided the tracking number for the package.
I followed all the guidelines on the Consulate's website and sent in everything that was requested. Overall it was not a stressful experience at all when compared with some of the stories I read on the web. I was worried but it went well with the exception that they did not include my wife's name in the passport as requested (sent required documents) and there is a typo in my residence address. But again, those are not details that would not make the passport useless for travel so I did not bother to get them corrected before my trip to India. May be I should call the Consulate and see if I can get it corrected now.
If you have any questions, please leave a comment with your contact details and I will get back to you.