Pakistan born man gets Indian citizenship after 50 years

Asif Karadia

The Hush Post: A Pakistan born man, who was staying in India on a 50-year-long visa has finally been granted citizenship of India. This after 51 years of his stay in India.

The court granted citizenship six months after the Bombay High Court had directed the government to consider a citizenship plea by Asif Karadia. The Mumbai Collector administered him an oath of allegiance to the country. The oath is the first step towards citizenship of India.

The court, granting protection against his deportation six months ago, had observed that it was a “unique case.” Karadia returned to India as an infant after being born in neighbouring Pakistan.

His father, Abbas Karadia, is an Indian. He got married in 1962 to a woman holding Pakistani passport, which said she was born in Mumbai.

The HC observed that “though conceived in India, as per customs, his (Asif ’s) mother went to her parents’ place in Karachi where Karadia was born on April 19, 1965.”

The mother and child came to India in 1967 and have been living here since then. Karadia has been residing on long-term visas. He stays in Nagpada with his extended family.

The father had filed a plea to seek Indian citizenship for his son after fears that he could be deported. Asif applied for citizenship in March 2015. Their case was that under Section 5 of the Citizenship Act, Asif was eligible to be given Indian citizenship. Besides, Article 5 of the Indian Constitution allows a person, “either of whose parents was born in the territory of India”, to become a citizen.

Asif ’s name was stamped on his mother’s Pakistani passport after his birth in Karachi. However, in 1972, the Indian government granted citizenship to his mother after she surrendered her Pakistani passport. Asif married an Indian woman and has three children, who are Indian citizens. But, only he wasn’t the one who had been granted Indian citizenship.

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