NEW DELHI: SOON Goans who have enjoyed the privilege of dual citizenship will have to opt for single one — Portuguese or Indian. According to sources, as India does not recognise dual citizenships, the central government has decided to set up a designate authority to decide on the citizenship issue of Goans on a case-to-case basis. There are indications from the government that the Indian citizenship of Goans who have already taken Portuguese passports may be rescinded. However, authorities will examine cases of others who have only received a Bill of Identity from the Portugal government.
“Since, the number of Indian Citizens who have Bill of Identity is over 1 lakh, the inter-ministerial committee has recommended setting up of more than one designate authority to settle citizenship issue as per the Indian Citizenship Act, 1955 and Citizenship Rules 2009,” sources added.
The Centre’s decision was taken after an inter-ministerial committee, headed by additional secretary in the Home Ministry B K Prasad, gave its recommendations.
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar had taken up the issue with Home Minister Rajnath Singh in October 2014. Then Chief Minister of Goa, Parrikar had sought a definite solution for the issue. Subsequently, the inter-ministerial panel was set up by the Centre. Sources said that many Goans were opting for Portuguese citizenship in pursuit of better prospects as the Portugal passport gives them unhindered access to all of Europe.