How to become a Citizen of India?

Introduction 

There are four main ways to get Indian Citizenship, according to the Citizenship Act of 1955. You can become an Indian citizen by birth, by descent, by naturalization, or by registration. 

How To Get Indian Citizenship by Birth 

The law has been amended six times since its enactment, and made the requirements more restrictive each time. Currently, there are three conditions to claim citizenship by birth, as it reads the Citizenship Act: 

–  Being born in India on or after the 26th of January of 1950 and before 1st of July of 1987, irrespective of your parents’ nationalities. 

–  Being born in India on or after the 1st of July of 1987 and before the 3rd of December of 2004, to at least one Indian parent. 

–  Being born in India on or after the 3rd of December of 2004, to at least one Indian parent. The non-Indian parent has to be a legal immigrant. 

Becoming An Indian Citizen by Descent 

The different time intervals present in the Citizenship Act also apply to citizenship by descent. You can claim citizenship by ius sanguinis if you’re either: 

– Born outside Indian territory on or after the 26th January 1950, but before the 10th of December 1992, and your father was a citizen of India by birth. If he was a citizen by descent, you cannot claim citizenship, unless your birth was registered at an Indian consulate within one year from the date of birth. 

-Born outside Indian territory on or after the 10th December 1992, but before the 3rd December 2004, if either of your parents were Indian citizens at the time of your birth. If one of them was a citizen by descent, you cannot claim citizenship, unless your birth was registered at an Indian consulate within one year from the date of birth. 

– Born outside Indian territory, on or after 3rd December 2004, as long as the parents declare that you don’t hold a passport of another country and the birth is registered at an Indian consulate within one year from the date of birth. 

In any case, if the birth wasn’t registered within the one-year period established by law, the Central Government can issue an exceptional permit. Since you rely on your parents’ will to make the bureaucratic decision when you’re a newborn, this method is out of your control. A minor can apply through the Central Government’s exceptional permit but it’s unlikely to be accepted. 

Getting Indian Citizenship by Naturalization 

If you are considering how to get Indian citizenship, this is by far the most reliable way. 

If you are a legal resident of India for 12 years and fulfill the qualifications stated by the Third Schedule of the Citizenship Act, you qualify to apply for Indian citizenship. 

You’ll need to gather the following documents, in order to apply: 

  • A copy of a valid Foreign Passport 
  • A copy of your Residential Permit 
  • A copy of a Bank Challan of 1500 Rupees deposited in the State Bank of India. 
  • Two language certificates proving that you’re proficient in any one of the Indian languages specified in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution. 
  • One affidavit from you and two affidavits from two Indians testifying to your character. 
  • Two different newspaper cuttings from the district you reside in, notifying your intention to apply for citizenship in the prescribed language required in the application form. 

A recent amendment also allows applications from illegal immigrants belonging to the Hindu, Buddhist, Parsi, Sikh, Jain, and Christian faiths, who face religious persecution in neighboring countries, if they entered India on or before 31 December 2014. Their application process reduces the number of required years of residence to 6. However, this amendment is subject to change since it was recently challenged by the Indian supreme court. 

Getting Citizenship by Registration 

Since the borders of India were subject to continuous disputes with neighboring countries the definition of “person of Indian origin” extends to any person or either of their parents, born in any territory which became part of India after the 15th of August of 1947. 

Citizenship by registration requires seven years of residence in India, or to be married to an Indian citizen who has lived in the country for seven years. It also extends to persons of Indian origin who are residents in any country outside undivided India and minor children of persons who are citizens of India. 

The required forms are meant to be filled online and printed to be sent along with the following documentation: 

Since the borders of India were subject to continuous disputes with neighboring countries the definition of “person of Indian origin” extends to any person or either of their parents, born in any territory which became part of India after the 15th of August of 1947. 

Citizenship by registration requires seven years of residence in India, or to be married to an Indian citizen who has lived in the country for seven years. It also extends to persons of Indian origin who are residents in any country outside undivided India and minor children of persons who are citizens of India. 

The required forms are meant to be filled online and printed to be sent along with the following documentation: 

  • A copy of your residential Permit 
  • Copies of your Indian Citizenship certificate 
  • Declaration and Oath of Allegiance 
  • Copy of a Bank Challan of 500 Rupees deposited in the Bank of India, payable towards declaration and Oath of Allegiance. 
  • Legal evidence that you or one or both of your parents is an Indian citizen.  

Conclusion 

Regardless of how you apply, there are two very important details you should have in mind before you start your application process. Claiming Indian citizenship will most likely mean that you renounce all other passports, since getting dual citizenship in India is very rare and available only in exceptional cases. Last but not least, while India is a polyglot country, Hindi is its lingua franca.  

Aishwarya Says:

I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.

If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.

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The copyright of this Article belongs exclusively to Ms. Aishwarya Sandeep. Reproduction of the same, without permission will amount to Copyright Infringement. Appropriate Legal Action under the Indian Laws will be taken.

If you would also like to contribute to my website, then do share your articles or poems at adv.aishwaryasandeep@gmail.com

We also have a Facebook Group Restarter Moms for Mothers or Women who would like to rejoin their careers post a career break or women who are enterpreneurs.

We are also running a series Inspirational Women from January 2021 to March 31,2021, featuring around 1000 stories about Indian Women, who changed the world. #choosetochallenge

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