Citizenship of certain persons of Indian origin residing outside India. This article deals with the rights of people of Indian origin residing outside India for purposes of employment, marriage, and education.

Who were considered Indian citizens when the constitution was promulgated?

When the constitution takes effect, four groups of people are regarded as being eligible to become Indian citizens. These groups are listed between Articles 5 and 8 of the constitution.

i) Citizenship by residence (Article 5): A person must have been a natural citizen of India for at least five years before the constitution took effect if they were born in India, had one of their parents born there, or are an Indian citizen themselves. A person’s place is where they have their own home or where they have a legal right to live permanently.

ii) Nationality of immigrants from Pakistan to India (Article 6): There are two groups of immigrants from Pakistan to India: those who arrived before July 19, 1948, and those who entered on or after July 19, 1948.

If a person immigrated before July 19, 1948, and if that person immigrated on or after July 19, 1948, and if that person is registered as an Indian citizen after having lived in India for at least six months prior to the date of application for registration, the Indian government will treat that person as an Indian citizen.

iii) Citizenship for Pakistani Immigrants (Article 7): If an Indian citizen migrates to Pakistan after March 1, 1947, but returns on the basis of an Indian residency permit, that person is eligible to become an Indian citizen. India is a representative chosen by the Indian government if it registers as a citizen of India after residing there for at least six months prior to the date of the application for registration.

Indians (parents of any Indian-born grandparents as specified in the Indian Government Act, 1935) living outside of India are entitled to Indian citizenship, as if they had been registered by Indian embassies or consulates in the nation where they currently reside.

What does Article 8 says ?

Rights of citizenship of certain persons of India origin residing outside India Notwithstanding anything in Article 5,

  • any person who or either of whose parents or any of whose grand parents was born in India as defined in the Government of India Act, 1935 (as originally enacted), and who is ordinarily residing in any country outside India as so defined shall be deemed to be a citizen of India if he has been registered as a citizen of India by the diplomatic or consular representative of India in the country where he is for the time being residing on an application made by him therefor to such diplomatic or consular representative, whether before or after the commencement of this Constitution, in the form and manner prescribed by the Government of the Dominion of India or the Government of India.


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