This online petition is a continuation of a legal effort in India to bring about Dual Citizenship for Overseas Citizens of India (OCI)/ Persons of Indian Origin (PIO) − individuals who have acquired foreign nationality/citizenship and are eligible for OCI/PIO status.
On 20th April 2015, the Supreme Court of India dismissed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by an Indian journalist S Venkat Narayan (eminent senior journalist) seeking quashing of amendments to the Indian Citizenship Act 1955, amendments which deny voting rights to OCIs. The PIL seeks to ensure, through setting aside of Sec. 9 of the Indian Citizenship Act 1955 and interpretation of various other constitutional provisions, that no Indian citizen who acquires the nationality/citizenship of a foreign country is subjected to termination of his/her Indian citizenship. In effect the PIL advocates quashing of Sec. 9 of the said Act in its entirety. The final purpose being to continue the Indian Citizenship even in the event of acquisition of another Citizenship as well as to accord the status of full citizenship with voting rights to all OCI and PIO cardholders.
In dismissing the said PIL, the Supreme Court reasoned that Mr. Venkat Narayan cannot plead on somebody else's behalf as he is not the aggrieved party and those who need to assert their right should come forward.
The purpose of this internet petition is to garner support for this global action so that the Indian Diaspora can receive those benefits that it rightly deserves. With the support of the aggrieved and affected Indian Diaspora, the freshly filed PIL would meet the standard deemed appropriate by the court. It would also pressure the Government to take appropriate actions/measures.
The Indian Diaspora have been called upon by the Indian government repeatedly to participate in its developmental goals through every possible means. Since decades, people of Indian origin have invested in their country of origin- financially and emotionally. This petition calls upon the Government of India not only to grant voting rights to OCIs/PIOs and to create Overseas Constituencies in the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha in a way similar to the Constituencies created by Italy, Turkey, France and other countries. These constituencies, specifically for the OCIs/PIOs can be over and above the existing seats for both houses of the parliament. It is not fair to ask the contribution of OCIs/PIOs to India's development without granting them the right to vote.
Note- This petition should be signed by 1) People of Indian Origin with foreign passports already having or planning to apply for Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI), 2) People having Indian passports with permanent residencies abroad seeking to adopt Citizenship of another Country, and 3) All those who support full Dual Citizenship Rights in India.