Between 2018 and 2021, at least 3,117 persons from Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan were granted Indian citizenship, according to Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Nityanand Rai.
Rai’s statement came after Rajya Sabha MP Dr K Keshava Rao of the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) asked about the total number of citizenship applications received from religious groups such as Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, and Christians in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan between 2018 and 2021. He was also curious as to how many people had been granted Indian citizenship.
In these four years, the government received 8,244 citizenship applications from minority groups in India’s neighbouring nations, and granted citizenship to 3,117 of them, according to Rai. According to a report by news agency PTI, all foreign nationals, including refugees, are governed by the terms of The Foreigners Act, 1946, The Registration of Foreigners Act, 1939, The Passport (Entry into India) Act, 1920, and The Citizenship Act, 1955.
According to Rai, there are 1,152 applications pending from Afghanistan, 428 from stateless people, 223 from Sri Lanka and the United States, 189 from Nepal, and 161 from Bangladesh until December 14, 2021, in response to a separate question from Member of Parliament Abdul Wahab on current applicants for Indian citizenship.
He further stated that up to ten Chinese citizens have applied for Indian citizenship.
The government adopted the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in 2019 to offer citizenship to persecuted minorities from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Pakistan who entered India on or before December 31, 2014, including Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis, and Christians. Indigenous communities in Assam and the northeastern states protested the CAA, claiming it threatened them. Between 2019 and 2020, protests against the CAA and the National Register of Citizens (NRC) lasted for months in Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh.
The administration said in July that the implementation of CAA will be delayed, and that an extension until January 9 of next year had been requested. Nityanand Rai confirmed this, saying that the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha had been asked to give an extension of time to establish the CAA regulations.