Renunciation of Indian Citizenship

Attaining citizenship of another country, and still holding onto an Indian passport or acquiring an Indian passport or travelling on an Indian passport amounts to a cognizable offence under the Indian Passport Act and attracts penalties and imprisonment or both.

Background

The Indian Citizenship Act, 1955, does not permit what we understand as Dual Citizenship. Therefore, if a person has ever held an Indian passport and later obtains the passport of another country, then under the 1955 Act that person will be required to surrender their Indian passport immediately.

Attaining  citizenship of another country, and still holding onto an Indian passport or acquiring an Indian  passport or travelling on an Indian passport amounts to a cognizable offence under the Indian Passport Act and attracts penalties and imprisonment or both. The stipulated period within which the  renunciation has to happen is within 3 years from the date of acquiring the foreign  citizenship. After the acquisition of foreign citizenship, an Indian passport cannot be used for travel after three months of the naturalization date.
  
However, a person doesn’t need to carry a Certificate of Renunciation of Indian Citizenship during their travel to India.

Process for Renunciation

After official  renunciation of Indian  citizenship, it is mandatory to apply for Surrender or a Renunciation certificate.

The documents required are (1) Old Indian passport (2) Copy of Naturalization Certificate (3) Copy of valid current passport. All the copies need to be self-attested.

If the old Indian passport is not there, then an Affidavit on the lost passport is needed or an Indian Birth Certificate Domicile or Certificate of residence or any educational qualification certificate issued by an Indian institution can be produced. However, a Police report of the lost Indian passport should nevertheless accompany the application.

It is important to bear in mind that while applying for Renunciation of Indian Citizenship, a duly filled application form as well as current photographs and relevant documents have to be submitted.  For minors, the copy of the parent’s documents is to be produced for cancellation or renunciation. As a child cannot sign or write a name, parents can sign on their behalf or they can put their thumb impression viz: Left Thumb for male and right thumb for female minor applicant.
  
Later, the applicant will be issued a surrender or a renunciation certificate on completion of submission of the Renunciation Application Form. Thereafter, the Indian passport will be cancelled and returned. However, no renunciation or surrender certificate will be issued, if the latest Indian passport is not surrendered physically.

Time duration for process and effects

General processing time is about 10 to 15  days from the date the  renunciation form is submitted. However, if you give up your Indian citizenship, you will no longer be entitled to support from the Indian Embassy if you're abroad. And when you return to India, the same rules will apply to you as for any other citizen of your adopted country.

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