A noncommercial collection of information about citizenship, dual citizenship and multiple citizenship

[Please refer to How to Read a Country Entry for help interpreting this material. It was produced prior to March 2001 as part of a US government report entitled Citizenship Laws of the World. The accuracy and depth of these country listings varies significantly, and some information may be incorrect. At best, this page presents only part of the story for a particular country. Additional information for this country may be available in Country Information]


CITIZENSHIP: Citizenship is based upon the Citizenship Act of 1955. Despite the variety of states, peoples, and languages in India, the law recognizes only Indian citizenship. (UKC-Commonwealth Nation)

BY BIRTH: Child born within the territory of India, regardless of the nationality of the parents. Though the law of India does recognize citizenship through birth in the country, unless the citizenship is actively applied for, the Indian government does not consider the child a citizen of India. The person has the right to return to India upon reaching the age of 18 and applying for Indian citizenship.

BY DESCENT: Child born of an Indian father, regardless of the child's country of birth. Child of an Indian mother and a foreign father is considered an Indian citizen if the mother and child continue to live in India and the father does not give the child his country's citizenship. Child born out of wedlock to an Indian mother, regardless of the child's country of birth. Children born abroad must be registered at an Indian Consulate.

BY NATURALIZATION: Indian citizenship may be acquired upon fulfillment of the following conditions: Person has resided in the country for the last five years and has renounced previous citizenship.



VOLUNTARY: Voluntary renunciation of Indian citizenship is permitted by law. Contact the Embassy for details and required paperwork.

INVOLUNTARY: The following are grounds for involuntary loss of Indian citizenship: Person voluntarily acquires a foreign citizenship. Naturalized citizenship was acquired through false statements. Naturalized citizen commits acts against the state of India before the end of a five-year grace period.

ANY QUESTIONS concerning citizenship, or requests for renunciation of citizenship, should be directed to the address below:

Embassy of India Consular Section 2107 Massachusetts Ave., NW Washington, DC 20008

Embassy Telephone: 202-939-7000 Consular Telephone: 202-939-9839/9845 Fax: 202-797-4693




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