Mains Paper 1: Social Issues | Population & associated issues
From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:
Prelims level: Citizenship Act, 1955
Mains level: Implications of grant of citizenship on demography as well as security situation.
- Since 2011, 30,000 Pakistani citizens have been granted long-term visas, a precursor to citizenship, and 1,500 applications are now pending.
- Officials put the number of such migrants in India at two lakh.
- There are 400 Pakistani Hindu refugee settlements in Jodhpur, Jaisalmer, Bikaner and Jaipur.
Empowering District Collectors
- The Union Home Ministry has empowered the DCs of certain districts in seven States to accept online applications to grant citizenship to “persecuted minorities” from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh living in India.
- A parliamentary committee has been examining the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, which proposes to grant citizenship to six persecuted minorities.
- These include Hindus, Jains, Sikhs, Parsis, Christians and Buddhists who came to India from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh before 2014.
- Under the new rules, notified on October 24, the migrants can apply online, and the verification reports or the security clearance reports of the applicants shall be made available to the Centre through an online portal.
- Citizenship will be granted after the verification reports are received from the States and the Centre.
- The Collector or the Secretary shall maintain an online/digital as well as physical register, containing the details of persons so registered or naturalized as a citizen of India.
- Their office shall furnish a copy thereof to the Central government within seven days of registration.
A Delegated Power
- As the Bill is pending, the Home Ministry gave powers to the Collectors in Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi to grant citizenship and naturalization certificates.
- This is carried out under Sections 5 and 6 of the Citizenship Act, 1955.
- No such power has been delegated to Assam officials.
Article 5 : Citizenship at the commencement of the Constitution
At the commencement of this Constitution, every person who has his domicile in the territory of India and –
- who was born in the territory of India; or
- either of whose parents was born in the territory of India; or
- who has been ordinarily resident in the territory of India for not less than five years immediately preceding such commencement, shall be a citizen of India.
Certain Acts related to Citizenship of India
- Indian nationality law largely follows the jus sanguinis (citizenship by right of blood) as opposed to the jus soli (citizenship by right of birth within the territory).
Acquisition of Indian Citizenship as per Citizenship Act 1955:
Indian Citizenship can be acquired under the following ways :
(1) Citizenship at the commencement of the constitution of India
(2) Citizenship by birth*
(3) Citizenship by descent
(4) Citizenship by registration
(5) Citizenship by naturalization.
- Persons domiciled in the territory of India as on 26 November 1949 automatically became Indian. (Citizenship at the commencement of the constitution of India.)
- Any person born in India on or after 26 January 1950, but prior to the commencement of the 1986 Act on 1 July 1987, is a citizen of India by birth. [Citizenship by birth]
- A person born in India on or after 1 July 1987 is a citizen of India if either parent was a citizen of India at the time of the birth. [Citizenship by birth]
- Those born in India on or after 3 December 2004 are considered citizens of India only if both of their parents are citizens of India or if one parent is a citizen of India and the other is not an illegal migrant at the time of their birth. [Citizenship by birth].
- One can lose citizenship of India in three ways – Renunciation, Termination and Deprivation.