Overview of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019

Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 received assent of the President on 12th December 2019.

Power to grant certificate

It empowers the Central Government or an authority specified by it in this behalf to grant a certificate of registration or certificate of naturalisation to an illegal migrant on an application made in this behalf. However, this power is subject to such conditions, restrictions and manner as may be prescribed by the Central Government. A person can make an application for obtaining citizenship even if any proceeding in this regard is pending against him.

Effect of grant of certificate

Subject to fulfilment of the conditions specified by citizenship by registration or the qualifications for naturalisation under the provisions of the Third Schedule, a person granted the certificate of registration or certificate of naturalisation shall be deemed to be a citizen of India from the date of his entry into India. Also on and from the date of commencement of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019, any proceeding pending against a person under in respect of illegal migration or citizenship shall stand abated on conferment of citizenship to him.

Benefits to people belonging to Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi or Christian community from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan

As per this act, any person belonging to Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi or Christian community from

  • Afghanistan
  • Bangladesh
  • Pakistan

who entered into India on or before the 31st day of December, 2014 and who has been exempted by the Central Government by or under clause (c) of sub-section (2) of section 3 of the Passport (Entry into India) Act, 1920 or from the application of the provisions of the Foreigners Act, 1946 or any rule or order made thereunder, shall not be treated as illegal migrant for the purposes of the Citizenship Act, 1955.

Also, for a person belonging to Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi or Christian community in Afghanistan, Bangladesh or Pakistan, the aggregate period of residence or service of Government in India as required for naturalisation is not less than 5 years, however, for persons belonging to other communities, it is not less than 11 years.

Full text of the Act: Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019

-Adv. Tushar Kaushik

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