When an individual holds citizenship of more than one country he is said to have dual citizenship. Indian constitution bars individuals from holding citizenship of another country while they are citizens of India. As soon as an Indian Citizen acquire citizenship of any other country, automatically his citizenship is dismissed in India along with rights which are guaranteed only to citizen of India for e.g. Right to contest election, Right to vote, Right to hold public offices; all these rights are subject to the person who is a citizen of India non-citizen or person who has surrendered his / her citizen cannot access these rights.
As Article 9 of the Indian Constitution States, “ No person shall be a citizen of India by virtue of Article 5, or be deemed to be a citizen of India by virtue of article 6 or 8 if he has voluntarily accepted citizenship of any other country.”
Therefore if any individual by a method of surrendering of by voluntarily acquiring citizenship of another country he will immediately cease to be a citizen of India and after that, he cannot acquire back citizenship on his way, a procedure for that has to be followed which is established by law.
Countries in which there are provisions for Dual Citizenship:-
- South Africa
- Sri Lanka
Now there is another provision in India of Overseas Citizenship, in which a person of Indian Origin can claim for this. Providing for overseas citizenship does not mean that India supports Dual Citizenship. Rights which are conferred to a regular citizen are not given to overseas citizen but perks of this type of citizenship are that a person can easily without so much formality travel to his motherland.
Procedure for registering for the overseas citizen is provided in the Citizenship Act. But a person can only register for Overseas Citizen if the country where he is citizen provides for dual citizenship or such type of citizenships. Passports will not be issued to an overseas citizen of India.
Individuals eligible for Obtaining Overseas Citizenship as per Section 7A:-
- “Any person of full age and capacity who is a citizen of another country, but was a citizen of India at the time of, or at any time after, the commencement of the constitution.
- A person of full age and capacity who is a citizen of another country, but was eligible to become a citizen of India at the time of commencement of the constitution.
- A person of full age and capacity who is a citizen of another country, but belonged to a territory that became part of India after the 15 August 1947
- Who is a child or grandchild of such a citizen”
Provided that person should not be a citizen of Pakistan or Bangladesh. Others can register for overseas citizenship under Section 7A.
The form to be filled for the overseas citizen is Form XXVIII. Please refer form CZ-Form-XXVIII.pdf
So, India is a country which allows only single citizenship and concept of dual citizenship is not supported in India. However, a citizen of another country can register for the overseas citizen if he fulfills the above requirements.