MUMBAI: Maharashtra has witnessed a six-fold upsurge in applications for Indian citizenship from Pakistani nationals since relaxation and simplification of immigration rules in December 2017. The gainers include cross-border brides in Mumbai who’ve waited for citizenship for near ten years.
Mahim’s Zahida Ansari (36), originally from Karachi, got her citizenship after a decade of her marriage to cousin Mohammed Azam. “The largest advantage that is included with citizenship may be the liberty to visit any place in India,” said Asma Gazdhar, born in Karachi also. “Foreigners aren’t permitted to travel beyond your city that they secured a visa. I’ve not gone outside Mumbai in seven years.” Because of this good reason, none of a honeymoon was had by these brides. After having kids even, family outings to a good neighbouring hill station such as for example Lonavla were a fantasy.
Against typically 10 applications every half a year earlier, today nearly 50 to 60 migrants from Pakistan make an application for Indian citizenship in Maharashtra through the period. Applications may also be cleared in a time-bound period because the powers have already been delegated to collectors in Mumbai now, Pune, Nagpur and thane, on Saturday ” a senior home department official told TOI.
“Applications are processed in a week, at the mercy of a favourable police report,” said Mumbai collector Shivajirao Jondhale. Currently, just seven applications for citizenship are pending in Mumbai.
Politician Gurumukh Jagwani from Jalgaon, a health care provider by profession, migrated to India from Sindh in 1985 and succeeded in securing Indian citizenship in 1990. He was elected to the constant state legislative council in 2004 and re-elected in 2014. “It’s true that there’s been a spurt in migrants from Pakistan trying to get citizenship for security and safety reasons,” said Jagwani, pointing out that after Partition, Indian citizenship was granted to those that had lived in the national country for five continuous years. During then PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee‘s tenure, the time was reduced to 2 yrs for technocrats. Once the UPA government took over, the time of continuous stay was enhanced to seven years.
Byculla resident Zeenat Fatima (34) can be from Karachi. Her husband Shahid Usmani, a software engineer, says these were married nine years and also have two children ago. “My partner got her approval and within 15 months she got her card,” he said.
Asma was 21 when she married Vaseem Gazdhar, an internet cable contractor, who lives in Temkar Street. “My mother comes from India and moved to Pakistan after marriage. Since childhood, I have been visiting India within my summer a vacation to meet relatives in Jodhpur,” she said. 30 and a mother of two now, Asma and Vaseem are pleased that she’s earned the red document that declares her an Indian national finally.
Since several cross-border marriages are consanguineous, the couple have relatives surviving in other towns or cities of India. Asma said, “I was struggling to head to Jodhpur, where my elders, aunt, cousins and uncle live, for a family group wedding. My grandmother passed but I possibly could not attend the funeral away. I’ve not seen my parents in years. They arrived from Pakistan for the marriage in Rajasthan. However they did not get yourself a visa to Mumbai and I was struggling to head to Jodhpur regardless of putting in a credit card applicatoin in New Delhi. We were in exactly the same country but cannot meet. That has been a sad moment for all of us. Now I’m pumped up about a reunion eagerly.”
Each of these wishes that regulations is amended to permit foreigners in India to cover hazri (attendance) at the neighborhood police station while travelling, until they receive nationality.