No pre-1971, parents' docs needed for NRC: Govt sources

No pre-1971, parents' docs needed for NRC: Govt sources

Seeking to allay apprehension about the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC), a senior government official on Monday said any person born in India before 1987 or whose parents were born before 1987 are bonafide Indian citizens and need not be bothered about the new Citizenship Amendment Act even as government offered its readiness to accept suggestions from protesters.

The official referred to the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2003 to allay fears following the protests on the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 which grants citizenship to non-Muslims from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh, as well as NRC. The country has witnessed widespread protests in the past one week over the new amendments.

Barring those in Assam where the cut off date for identification is set at 1971, the official quoted the 2003 Act, people whose one parent is an Indian and neither is an illegal immigrant are also considered Indian citizens.

According to the 2003 Amendment Act, citizenship by birth is given to those born in India on or after 26 January, 1950 but before the 1 July, 1987. Those born after 1 July, 1987 but the commencement of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2003, one of the parents should be an Indian.

After the commencement of the 2003 Act, one will be considered a citizen by birth if both of his parents are citizens of India or one of whose parents is a citizen of India and the other is not an illegal migrant.

Referring to the protests, the official said the government is open to receive suggestions from anyone. "We are also trying to remove doubts of the people about the CAA through various ways," he said.

The changes in the new Act was brought after consultations, the official said adding that those who want to give suggestions can give as the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) is in the process of framing rules.

He said protests were majorly backed by a number of opposition parties, who have moved the Supreme Court against the new law.