Citizenship provisions in India – UPSC Prelims

  • Citizenship signifies the relationship between individual and state.
  • Like any other modern state, India has two kinds of people, citizens and aliens.
  • Citizens are full members of the Indian State and owe allegiance to it. They enjoy all civil and political rights.
  • There are two well-known principles for the grant of citizenship:
    • While ‘jus soli’ confers citizenship on the basis of place of birth, ‘jus sanguinis’ gives recognition to blood ties.
    • From the time of the Motilal Nehru Committee (1928), the Indian leadership was in favour of the enlightened concept of jus soli.
    • The racial idea of jus sanguinis was also rejected by the Constituent Assembly as it was against the Indian ethos.
Constitutional Provisions:
  • Citizenship is listed in the Union List under the Constitution and thus is under the exclusive jurisdiction of Parliament.
  • The Constitution does not define the term ‘citizen’ but details of various categories of persons who are entitled to citizenship are given in Part 2 (Articles 5 to 11).
  • Chief Secretary of StateUnlike other provisions of the Constitution, which came into being on 26th January, 1950, these articles were enforced on 26th November, 1949 itself, when the Constitution was adopted.
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