Citizenship – Articles 5 to Article 11 explained in simple terms

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Citizenship is a relation between the individual and the country. These are laws which allow a person to be a citizen of a place.

Generally citizenship is defined through Jus soli (based on the place of birth) and jus sanguinis (based on blood ties)

Indian constitution gives preference to jus soli which confers citizenship based on the place of birth.

Part II of the Constitution of India (Articles 5-11) deals with the Citizenship of India. The citizenship in India is defined in the Union List and Articles 5 to Articles 11 define who are entitled to be a citizenship of India. These Articles were enforced on Nov 26th, 1949. This was before India became a Republic on 26th Jan, 1950.

In the following, we shall examine the Articles 5 to Article 11 and explain each of them in very simple easy terms

 

Article 5

Citizenship at the commencement of the Constitution.

Definition as per https://www.mea.gov.in/Images/pdf1/Part2.pdf

At the commencement of this Constitution, every person who has his domicile in the territory of India and –
(a) who was born in the territory of India; or
(b) either of whose parents was born in the territory of India; or
(c) who has been ordinarily resident in the territory of India for not less than five years immediately preceding such commencement,

shall be a citizen of India.

 

What it means in simple terms -

It means that to be a citizen of India, you need to satisfy two conditions

 

1. A person must have his/her domicile in India.
What does domicile mean? It has been explained by the Supreme Court through different cases (Mohammad Raza Vs State of Bombay, Pradeep Jain Vs Union of India)   
Suppose you are staying in a place with the intention of settling there permanently, then it is defined as your domicile. In easy terms if you have a permanent house anywhere, it becomes your domicile.
Suppose you get a job and you have to work overseas for 5 years with the intention of returning to India after 5 years – then you would still have your domicile territory in India.  

2. Any one of these conditions (not necessarily all conditions) is fulfilled
 

a) He/she is born in India

b) His/her parents are born in India

c) He/she is residing in India 5 years prior to 26th Jan, 1950 (or since 1945)


 

 

 

Article 6

Rights of citizenship of certain persons who have migrated to India from Pakistan.

 

Definition as per https://www.mea.gov.in/Images/pdf1/Part2.pdf

Notwithstanding anything in article 5, a person who has migrated to the territory of India from the territory now included in Pakistan shall be deemed to be a citizen of India at the commencement of this Constitution if –

(a) he or either of his parents or any of his grand-parents was born in India as defined in the Government of India Act, 1935 (as originally enacted); and

(b) (i) in the case where such person has so migrated before the nineteenth day of July, 1948, he has been ordinarily resident in the territory of India since the date of his migration, or
(ii) in the case where such person has so migrated on or after the nineteenth day of July, 1948, he has been registered as a citizen of India by an officer appointed in that behalf by the Government of the Dominion of India on an application made by him therefore to such officer before the commencement of this Constitution in the form and manner prescribed by that Government:
Provided that no person shall be so registered unless he has been resident in the territory of India for at least six months immediately preceding the date of his application.

What it means in simple terms -

Any person who has come to India before July 19, 1948 automatically becomes a citizen of India if

1. Any parent or any grandparent has his or her birth in India

2. He has resided in India since the date of his migration.


If any person has migrated to India after July 19, 1948, he / she can get citizenship if

1. Any parent or any grandparent has his or her birth in India

2. He / she has returned to India under a Permit for Resettlement

3. He / she must have stayed in India for at least 6 months before applying for citizenship

4. He / she has submitted an application for Registration to the Government of India

5. He/ she has been registered as a citizen by Government of India

Why July 19th, 1948?
On 19th July, 1948 the Permit system was introduced between India and Pakistan.


 

 


Article 7

Rights of citizenship of certain migrants to Pakistan.


Definition as per https://www.mea.gov.in/Images/pdf1/Part2.pdf

Notwithstanding anything in articles 5 and 6, a person who has after the first day of March 1947, migrated from the territory of India to the territory now included in Pakistan shall not be deemed to be a citizen of India:


Provided that nothing in this article shall apply to a person who, after having so migrated to the territory now included in Pakistan, has returned to the territory of India under a permit for resettlement or permanent return issued by or under the authority of any law and every such person shall for the purposes of clause (b) of Article 6 be deemed to have migrated to the territory of India after the nineteenth day of July, 1948.
 

What it means in simple terms -
 

Article 7 talks about the citizenship of people who has migrated from India to Pakistan. It divides these people into 2 categories

Category 1 – People who migrated to Pakistan after 1st March, 1947. Article 7 says that these people are not citizens of India even if they are eligible to become citizens of India under Article 5 and Article 6. Article 7 can override Article 6 and Article 5

Category 2 – Any person who has migrated to Pakistan after 1st March, 1947 but has come back after taking Permit for Resettlement can be eligible for citizenship if

 

1. Any parent or any grandparent has his or her birth in India

2. He/she has returned to India under a Permit for Resettlement

3. He/she must have stayed in India for at least 6 months before applying for citizenship

4. He/she has submitted an application for Registration to the Government of India

5. He/she has been registered as a citizen by Government of India


 


Article 8

Rights of citizenship of certain persons of Indian origin residing outside India.


Definition as per https://www.mea.gov.in/Images/pdf1/Part2.pdf

 

Notwithstanding anything in article 5, any person who or either of whose parents or any of whose grandparents was born in India as defined in the Government of India Act, 1935 (as originally enacted), and who is ordinarily residing in any country outside India as so defined shall be deemed to be a citizen of India if he has been registered as a citizen of India by the diplomatic or consular representative of India in the country where he is for the time being residing on an application made by him therefore to such diplomatic or consular representative, whether before or after the commencement of this Constitution, in the form and manner prescribed by the Government of the Dominion of India or the Government of India.
 

What it means in simple terms -

Any person who is of Indian origin but staying outside India (any nation except Pakistan) can become a citizen of India if

 

1. He/she or if any of his/her parents/grandparents were Indian or were born in undivided India
 

2. If the Indian Diplomatic Representative in the country in which he/she is residing registers him/her as citizen of India. Meaning if a person is residing in UK, then the Indian Diplomatic Representative in UK must recognize the person as a citizen of India.





Article 9

Persons voluntarily acquiring citizenship of a foreign State not to be citizens.


Definition as per https://www.mea.gov.in/Images/pdf1/Part2.pdf

 

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 article 8 if he has voluntarily acquired the citizenship of any foreign State.

What it means in simple terms -
 

Under Article 9, before commencement of the constitution (which is before 26th Jan, 1950), if any person voluntarily takes the citizenship of a foreign state, then he/she cannot demand India Citizenship under Article 5, Article 6 or Article 8

 

 

 


Article 10

Continuance of the rights of citizenship.


Definition as per https://www.mea.gov.in/Images/pdf1/Part2.pdf

 

Every person who is or is deemed to be a citizen of India under any of the foregoing provisions of this Part shall, subject to the provisions of any law that may be made by Parliament, continue to be such citizen.
 

What it means in simple terms -

Under Article 10, If any person have acquired Indian Citizenship under Article 5, Article 6 or Article 8, then his/her rights as an Indian citizen would be subject to laws passed by the Parliament.
It introduces the law making power of the Parliament.

 

 

 


Article 11

Parliament to regulate the right of citizenship by law.


Definition as per https://www.mea.gov.in/Images/pdf1/Part2.pdf

 

Nothing in the foregoing provisions of this Part shall derogate from the power of Parliament to make any provision with respect to the acquisition and termination of citizenship and all other matters relating to citizenship.

What it means in simple terms -

Article 11 gives power to the Parliament that after commencement of the Constitution (Jan 26th, 1950) to pass laws on matters related to citizenship. It gives 2 kinds of power to the Parliament

 

  1. After commencement of the Constitution ( which is after Jan 26th, 1950), the parliament  can make laws related to citizenship
     

  2. Power to restrict or revoke the citizenship acquired under Articles 5 to Articles 8.


Thus Article 11 gave powers to the Parliament of India to regulate the right of citizenship by law. This provision resulted in the enactment of Citizenship Act 1955 by the Indian Parliament.

Questions related to Citizenship 


1. In which of the following conditions, Government of India can terminate Citizenship of an Indian?

1. The citizen has obtained the citizenship by fraud
2. The citizen has shown disloyalty to the Constitution of India
3. The citizen has unlawfully traded or communicated with the enemy during a war
4. The citizen has been ordinarily resident out of India for seven years continuously

Select the correct answer using the codes given below:


A.  1 and 3 only
B.  1, 2 and 4 only
C.  1, 3 and 4 only
D.  1, 2, 3 and 4


Answer : D

 

By Deprivation: It is a compulsory termination of Indian citizenship by the Central government, if:

the citizen has obtained the citizenship by fraud
the citizen has shown disloyalty to the Constitution of India
the citizen has unlawfully traded or communicated with the enemy during a war
the citizen has, within five years after registration or naturalisation, been imprisoned in any country for two years and
the citizen has been ordinarily resident out of India for seven years continuously.
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has recently cancelled the citizenship of TRS MLA from Vemulawada in north Telangana Chennamaneni Ramesh.
The MHA has cancelled his citizenship on the ground of misrepresentation of facts at the time of applying for citizenship in 2008.

 

 

 


2. Due to an excessive number of refugees incoming to India from Sri lanka & Bangladesh, the Citizenship act 1955 was amended and Citizenship by birth was conferred on those who have been born on or after January 26, 1950 and ______?

A. June 30, 1987
B. June 30, 1997
C. January 26, 1987
D. January 26, 1988


Answer : A


Citizenship By Birth 

A person born in India on or after 26th January 1950 but before 1st July, 1987 is citizen of India by birth irrespective of the nationality of his parents.


Source : https://indiancitizenshiponline.nic.in/acquisition1.htm

 

 


3. Consider the following statements -

1. A person who was born on 26th January, 1951 in Rangoon, whose father was a citizen of India by birth at the time of his birth, is deemed to be an Indian citizen by descent.

2. A person who was born on 1st July, 1988 in Itanagar, whose mother is a citizen of India at the time of his birth but the father was not, is deemed to be a citizen of India by birth.

Which one of the statements given above is/are correct?

A  Only 1                         
B  Only 2
C  Both 1 and 2                
D  Neither 1 nor 2


Answer : C


Statement 1 - Citizenship By Descent 

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 by birth at the time of his birth. In case the father was a citizen of India by descent only, that person shall not be a citizen of India, unless his birth is registered at an Indian Consulate within one year from the date of birth or with the permission of the Central Government, after the expiry of the said period.

Statement 2 -Citizenship By Birth

A person born in India on or after 1st July,1987 but before 3rd December, 2004 is
considered citizen of India by birth if either of his parents is a citizen of India at the time of his birth.

 

 

4. Which Article deals with the rights of citizenships of Indian origin people residing outside of India?


A. Article 6
B. Article 7
C. Article 8
D. Article 9 

Answer : C


Article 8 deals with the Rights of citizenship of certain persons of Indian origin residing outside India.


Any person who is of Indian origin but staying outside India (any nation except Pakistan) can become a citizen of India if

1. He/she or if any of his/her parents/grandparents were Indian or were born in undivided India

2. If the Indian Diplomatic Representative in the country in which he/she is residing registers him/her as citizen of India. Meaning if a person is residingin UK, then the Indian Diplomatic Representative in UK must recognize the
person as a citizen of India.

 

 

 

 


5. Consider the following statements about National Population Register (NPR):

1. It is a Register of usual residents of the country.
2. It is mandatory for every usual resident of India to register in the NPR.
3. The objective of the NPR is to create a comprehensive identity database, which contain demographic as well as biometric particulars.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

A 1 only
B 2 and 3
C 3 only
D 1, 2 and 3

Answer : D


Statement 1 - A usual resident is defined for the purposes of NPR as a person who has resided in a local area for the past 6 months or more or a person who intends to reside in that area for the next 6 months or more.


Statement 2 - It is being prepared at the local (Village/sub-Town), sub-District, District, State and National level under provisions of the Citizenship Act 1955 and the Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and issue of National Identity Cards) Rules, 2003.


Statement 3 - The objective of the NPR is to create a comprehensive identity database of every usual resident in the
country.The database would contain demographic as well as biometric particulars .

 

 

6. Which of the statements given below is/are true?

1. The Citizenship Act (1955) provides for acquisition and loss of citizenship after the
commencement of the Constitution.

2. In India both a citizen by birth as well as a naturalised citizen are eligible for the office of
President.

Choose correct answer:

A 1 only
B 2 only
C Both 1 and 2
D Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: C


The Constitution deals with the citizenship from Articles 5 to 11 under Part II. However, itcontains neither any permanent nor any elaborate provisions in this regard. It only identifies the persons who became citizens of India at its commencement (i.e., on January 26, 1950). It does not deal with the problem of acquisition or loss of citizenship subsequent to its commencement. It empowers the Parliament to enact a law to provide for such matters and any other matter relating to citizenship. Accordingly, the Parliament has enacted the Citizenship Act, 1955, which has been amended in 1957, 1960, 1985, 1986, 1992, 2003, 2005 and 2015.

Statement 1 - The Citizenship Act (1955) provides for acquisition and loss of citizenship after the commencement of the Constitution.

Statement 2 - In India both a citizen by birth as well as a naturalised citizen are eligible for the office of President while in USA, only a citizen by birth and not a naturalised citizen is eligible for the office of President.

 

7. Which of the following regarding Constitutional provisions for Citizenship is/are INCORRECT?

1. They do not deal with the acquisition or loss of Citizenship subsequent to the Commencement of the Constitution

2. They allow the Indian citizens to acquire any foreign state Citizenship voluntarily as it is in alignment with the spirit of “VASUDHAIVA KUTUMBAKAM”

3. They uphold the opinion of many political thinkers regarding Indian Constitution as “Federal with Unitary bias”


A 2 and 3 only

B 1 and 2 only

C 2 only

D 1 and 3 only


Answer: C

 

Explanation:      

Statement 1-The Constitution deals with the citizenship from Article 5 to 11 under Part II. However, it only identifies the persons who became Citizens of India at its commencement [i.e. on January 26,1950].It does not deal with the problem of acquisition or loss of Citizenship subsequent to the Commencement of the Constitution. It empowers the Parliament to enact a law to provide for such matters and any other matter relating to citizenship. Hence statement 1 is CORRECT.

Statement 2- No person shall be a citizen of India or be deemed to be a citizen of India ,if he has voluntarily acquired the citizenship of any foreign state as per Article 9. Hence statement 2 is INCORRECT

Statement 3- All citizens of India irrespective of the State/UT in which they are born and/or reside enjoy the identical rights across the country[except in J&K]. There is no separate state citizenship[Unitary bias] despite the division of powers between Central and State governments[Federal nature]. Hence statement 3 is CORRECT.


Source:Indian Polity-M Laxmikanth-Chapters on Salient Features of the Constitution and Citizenship

 

 

 


8. How many years does a foreigner married to an Indian Citizen need to stay in India before he/she can apply for Indian Citizen ?


A. 7 years
B. 5 years
C. 6 years
D. 5 years out of the preceding 7 years


Answer : A 

Explanation:

Citizenship by Registration :
Persons who are married to a citizen of India and who are ordinarily resident in India for SEVEN YEARS can apply for Citizenship.

Source - https://indiancitizenshiponline.nic.in/acquisition1.htm 

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