Norms for Indian citizenship to certain Pakistani nationals relaxed

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New Delhi, June 10 (ANI): The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has asked State Governments and the UT Administration to consider cases for extension of the Long-term Visa (LTV) of certain categories of Pakistani nationals without insisting of validity of passports as per the provisions of the Gazette notification issued on May 15, as such Pakistani nationals have come to India permanently with the intention to attain Indian citizenship.

However, only such Pakistani nationals are eligible to be considered for grant and extension of LTV, who have come to India on or before December 31, 2009. he matter was examined in consultation with the Ministry of External Affairs and Ministry of Law and it has been decided to grant exemption to such Pakistani nationals from the provisions of Rule 3 of the Passport (Entry into India) Act, 1920.

Accordingly, an order to this effect has been notified on May 15.

The following categories of Pak nationals are covered to enable them to qualify for extension of Visa:

(a) Member of minority communities in Pakistan (Hindus and Sikhs)

(b) Pakistani women married to Indian nationals and staying in India.

(c) Indian women married to Pak nationals and returning due to widowhood/divorce and having no male member to support them in akistan and

(d) Cases involving extreme compassion.In addition to abovementioned four categories of Pak nationals, grant of LTV is also being considered in the case of male Muslim community members being originally Indian citizen, who went to Pakistan after partition leaving behind family in India and returned back to India on a valid passport issued by the Government of Pakistan and settled in the State of Kerala.

Such Pak nationals were unable to extend the validity period of their passports on account of reasons such as

(i) Pakistan High Commission's refusal to extend the validity of passport in the absence of Computerized National Identity Card. Pakistan is issuing Computerized National identity Cards to their nationals and extends validity of Passports in respect of only those Pak nationals who possess the National Identity Card.

(ii) Poor economic conditions of the Pak nationals.The Ministry of Home Affairs have been receiving a large number of references from such Pak nationals staying in various States where their passports had expired and they were not able to renew the same.

In the absence of valid passport and visa, they are not considered for Indian citizenship. (ANI)

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