India: Citizenships by birth

Reference: Sections 3, 4, 5(1) and 5(4) of the Citizenship Act, 1955.

1. Every person born in India on or after 26.01.1950 but before 01.07.1987 is an Indian citizen irrespective of the nationality of his/her parents.

2. Every person born in India between 01.07.1987 and 02.12.2004 is a citizen of India given either of his/her parents is a citizen of the country at the time of his/her birth.

3.  Every person born in India on or after 3.12.2004 is a citizen of the country given both his/her parents are Indians or at least one parent is a citizen and the other is not an illegal migrant at the time of birth.

Q. Can an Indian citizen hold dual citizenship? How?

A: The amended Citizenship Act of 1955 does not provide for dual citizenship or dual nationality. It only allows citizenship for a person listed under the provisions above ie: by birth, descent, registration or naturalisation.

Q. How does the citizenship become invalid

A: Section 9 of the Citizenship Act, 1955 deals with termination. According to the provision, any citizen of India, who by registration, naturalisation or otherwise voluntarily takes the citizenship of another country, shall upon such acquisition cease to be a citizen of India. Cases of termination or cessation of citizenship will be determined ultimately by courts of law.

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