Modes of acquiring Indian citizenship & How to apply for Indian citizenship

Source: Synopsis of the Citizenship Act, 1955

By Birth (section 3)

A person born in India on or after 26th January 1950 but before 1st July 1987 is a citizen of India by birth irrespective of the nationality of his parents. A person born in India on or after 1st July 1987 is considered as a citizen of India only if either of his parents is a citizen of India at the time of his birth. Further, those born in India on or after 7th January 2004 are considered citizens of India only if both of their parents are citizens of India or one of whose parents is a citizen of India and the other is not an illegal migrant at the time of their birth. Illegal immigrant generally refers to any foreigner who: Entered India without the required travel documents such as a passport and visa: or Entered India with valid documents but overstayed the permitted time specified in their visa

By Descent (section 4)

 A person born outside India on or after 26th January 1950 but before 10th December 1992 is a citizen of India by descent, if his father was a citizen of India at the time of his birth. A person born outside India on or after 10th December 1992 is considered as a citizen of India if either of his parents is a citizen of India at the time of his birth. From 07th January 2004, a person born outside India shall not be a citizen of India by virtue of this Section, unless his birth is registered at an Indian consulate within one year of the date of birth or with the permission of the Central Government, after the expiry of the said period. An application, for registration of the birth of a minor child, to an Indian consulate under Section 4(1) shall be made in Form I and shall be accompanied by an undertaking in writing from the parents of such minor child that he or she does not hold the passport of another country.

By Registration (section 5)

Citizenship of India by registration can be acquired by

persons of Indian origin, who or either of whose parents was born in undivided India and who are ordinarily resident in India for seven years; persons of India origin who are ordinarily residents in any country or place outside undivided India; persons who are or have been married to a citizen of India and who are ordinarily resident in India for five years; minor children both whose parents are Indian citizens; a citizen of Singapore and Canada who is resident in India for five years and eight years respectively. By Naturalization (section 6) Citizenship of India by naturalization can be acquired by a foreigner who is ordinarily resident in India for twelve years (continuously for the twelve months preceding the date of application and for eleven years in the aggregate in the fourteen years preceding the twelve months).

How to apply online for Indian citizenship

Foreign nationals interested in acquiring Indian citizenship can do so now using the online citizenship application available on the Indian government website. Applicants for Indian citizenship will find that the Indian government online citizenship application site is very user friendly and provides information to fill the application easily.

Procedure to apply for Indian citizenship online

Visit http://indiancitizenshiponline.nic.in/ic_form_public.aspx Once on the website, applicants will need to select the category under which they are applying for Indian citizenship. The options available are: Registration As a Citizen of India Under Section 5(1)(a) of the Citizenship Act, 1955 Made by a person of Indian Origin Registration As a Citizen of India Under Section 5(1)(c) of the Citizenship Act, 1955 Made by a person Who is/has been married to a Citizen of India Registration of a minor child Under section 5(1)(d) of the Citizenship Act, 1955 Registration as a citizen of India under section 5(1)(e) of the citizenship act, 1955 made by a person whose parents are registered as citizen of India under section 5(1)(a) or section 6(1) Registration as a citizen of India under section 5(1)(f) of the citizenship act, 1955 made by a person who or either of the parents was a citizen of independent India Registration as a citizen of India under section 5(1)(g) of the citizenship act, 1955 made by a person who is registered as an overseas citizen of India under section 7A Naturalization as a citizen of India under section 6(1) of the citizenship act, 1955 Registration of birth of a minor child at an Indian consulate under section 4(1) of the citizenship act, 1955 Select the category that applies from the listed options and applicants will be directed to a page that lists: The eligibility criteria for the option selected List of required documents Complete instructions on how to proceed and upload required documents Applicants can from this page, click the ‘Apply Online’ icon and proceed to fill in their online application.

PIO  Card Holders

As of January 9, 2015. PIO  scheme has been canceled by the Government of India. All existing PIO card holders already registered will be deemed to be Overseas Citizens of India. Hence the same criteria of OCI will apply for former PIO card holders.

OCI Holders

Those who have OCI status may be granted Indian Citizenship after 5 years from date of registration provided they stay in India for one year before submitting the application for Indian citizenship

Foreign passport holders acquiring Indian citizenship

Acquiring Indian Citizenship will mean you will lose your foreign citizenship. India does NOT allow dual citizenship. Do not confuse OCI to be dual citizenship of India.
indian passport
Disclaimer: Information provided is for general knowledge only and should not be deemed to be professional advice. For professional advice kindly consult a professional accountant, immigration advisor or the Indian consulate. Rules and regulations do change from time to time. Please note that in case of any variation between what has been stated on this website and the relevant Act, Rules, Regulations, Policy Statements etc. the latter shall prevail. © Copyright 2006 Nriinformation.com
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Information on the online application

form for Indian Citizenship*

Online application form: Each online application form is meant for one person only. Separate application has to be filed for each applicant. The online form should be filled in Block/ Capital letters.   Furnish information exactly in the manner asked for in the forms, especially the names, address and date of birth. Applicants are required to verify the application details before submitting the online application. Once the online application form is submitted by the applicant, then further modifications are not allowed. Hence applicants are requested to check and validate the details before submitting the online application form. Applicants are requested to keep the MHA File Number (generated automatically after the submission of online form) for printing of the online application form and for status tracking. Submission of form Applicants has to submit the duly signed/ self attested hard copy of the computer generated application form, and supporting documents to his/ her nearest Collector/ DC/DM office personally. *[Source: http://indiancitizenshiponline.nic.in/Ic_GeneralInstruction.pdf]

Modes of acquiring Indian citizenship

Source: Synopsis of the Citizenship Act, 1955

By Birth (section 3)

A person born in India on or after 26th January 1950 but before 1st July 1987 is a citizen of India by birth irrespective of the nationality of his parents. A person born in India on or after 1st July 1987 is considered as a citizen of India only if either of his parents is a citizen of India at the time of his birth. Further, those born in India on or after 7th January 2004 are considered citizens of India only if both of their parents are citizens of India or one of whose parents is a citizen of India and the other is not an illegal migrant at the time of their birth. Illegal  immigrant generally refers to any foreigner who: Entered India without the required travel documents such as a passport and visa: or  Entered India with valid documents but overstayed the permitted time specified in their visa

By Descent (section 4)

 A person born outside India on or after 26th January 1950 but before 10th December 1992 is a citizen of India by descent, if his father was a citizen of India at the time of his birth. A person born outside India on or after 10th December 1992 is considered as a citizen of India if either of his parents is a citizen of India at the time of his birth. From 07th January 2004, a person born outside India shall not be a citizen of India by virtue of this Section, unless his birth is registered at an Indian consulate within one year of the date of birth or with the permission of the Central Government, after the expiry of the said period. An application, for registration of the birth of a minor child, to an Indian consulate under Section 4(1) shall be made in Form I and shall be accompanied by an undertaking in writing from the parents of such minor child that he or she does not hold the passport of another country.

By Registration (section 5)

Citizenship of India by registration can be

acquired by

persons of Indian origin, who or either of whose parents was born in undivided India and who are ordinarily resident in India for seven years; persons of India origin who are ordinarily residents in any country or place outside undivided India; persons who are or have been married to a citizen of India and who are ordinarily resident in India for five years; minor children both whose parents are Indian citizens; a citizen of Singapore and Canada who is resident in India for five years and eight years respectively.

By Naturalization (section 6)

Citizenship of India by naturalization can be acquired by a foreigner who is ordinarily resident in India for twelve years (continuously for the twelve months preceding the date of application and for eleven years in the aggregate in the fourteen years preceding the twelve months). How to apply online for Indian citizenship Foreign nationals interested in acquiring Indian citizenship can do so now using the online citizenship application available on the Indian government website. Applicants for Indian citizenship will find that the Indian government online citizenship application site is very user friendly and provides information to fill the application easily.

Procedure to apply for Indian

citizenship online

Visit http://indiancitizenshiponline.nic.in/ic_form_p ublic.aspx Once on the website, applicants will need to select the category under which they are applying for Indian citizenship. The options available are: Registration As a Citizen of India Under Section 5(1)(a) of the Citizenship Act, 1955 Made by a person of Indian Origin Registration As a Citizen of India Under Section 5(1)(c) of the Citizenship Act, 1955 Made by a person Who is/has been married to a Citizen of India Registration of a minor child Under section 5(1)(d) of the Citizenship Act, 1955 Registration as a citizen of India under section 5(1)(e) of the citizenship act, 1955 made by a person whose parents are registered as citizen of India under section 5(1)(a) or section 6(1) Registration as a citizen of India under section 5(1)(f) of the citizenship act, 1955 made by a person who or either of the parents was a citizen of independent India Registration as a citizen of India under section 5(1)(g) of the citizenship act, 1955 made by a person who is registered as an overseas citizen of India under section 7A Naturalization as a citizen of India under section 6(1) of the citizenship act, 1955 Registration of birth of a minor child at an Indian consulate under section 4(1) of the citizenship act, 1955 Select the category that applies from the listed options and applicants will be directed to a page that lists: The eligibility criteria for the option selected List of required documents Complete instructions on how to proceed and upload required documents Applicants can from this page, click the ‘Apply Online’ icon and proceed to fill in their online application.  PIO Card Holders As of January 9, 2015. PIO scheme has been canceled by the Government of India. All existing PIO card holders already registered will be deemed to be Overseas Citizens of India. Hence the same criteria of OCI will apply for former PIO card holders.

OCI Holders

Those who have OCI status may be granted Indian Citizenship after 5 years from date of registration provided they stay in India for one year before submitting the application for Indian citizenship

Foreign passport holders acquiring Indian

citizenship

Acquiring Indian Citizenship will mean you will lose your foreign citizenship. India does NOT allow dual citizenship. Do not confuse OCI to be dual citizenship of India.
indian passport
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Information on the online application

form for Indian Citizenship*

Online application form: Each online application form is meant for one person only. Separate application has to be filed for each applicant. The online form should be filled in Block/ Capital letters.   Furnish information exactly in the manner asked for in the forms, especially the names, address and date of birth. Applicants are required to verify the application details before submitting the online application. Once the online application form is submitted by the applicant, then further modifications are not allowed. Hence applicants are requested to check and validate the details before submitting the online application form. Applicants are requested to keep the MHA File Number (generated automatically after the submission of online form) for printing of the online application form and for status tracking. Submission of form Applicants has to submit the duly signed/ self attested hard copy of the computer generated application form, and supporting documents to his/ her nearest Collector/ DC/DM office personally. *[Source: http://indiancitizenshiponline.nic.in/Ic_GeneralInstruction.pdf]