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My wife and I are both US citizens are have been living in the US for about 20 years.

I was born in India, and my wife was born in Pakistan.

We are having a newborn soon and wanted to make sure he would able to travel to India frequently without hassle.

Would it be possible for him to obtain Indian Citizenship for him? (I assume not since he will automatically have US citizenship)

Alternately is it possible for him to obtain an OCI card? (I've heard that if one's parents or grandparents are from Pakistan or Bangladesh, then he/she is not eligible to apply for an OCI card.

I'm sure this is a situation that has happened to others. Looking for some guidance on how to handle the situation so that he can travel to India. My wife, for example, gets her visa application rejected to India all the time, even though she is a US Citizen.

  • We are British citizen. I was Indian and my wife Pakistani. We both surrendered our nationalities when we became British. Our twin daughters were Indian passport holder and when they got their British passport, surrendered Indian passports. Applied for OCI and got it in 2016. In Feb 2020 applied for OCI renewal due to British passport renewal. Both OCI cancelled stating that mother is Pakistani origin. Wiered. Since they were Indian passport holder. Don't understand the logic. They can get Indian passport, and OCI but then OCI renewal rejected. – Expat Jul 19 at 17:59
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Would it be possible for him to obtain Indian Citizenship for him? (I assume not since he will automatically have US citizenship)

No.

I want to note that it's not true that he can't have Indian citizenship just because he will automatically have US citizenship. According to India's citizenship act, a child born abroad to at least one Indian citizen parent will be an Indian citizen by descent if he/she is registered at an Indian consulate within one year of birth with the declaration that he/she does not possess a foreign passport. Your son having US citizenship doesn't the ability to meet that requirement, as long as you don't get him a US passport.

However, since both of you are US citizens, neither of you are Indian citizens when your son is born (you lost your Indian citizenship when you voluntarily acquired US citizenship), and thus neither of you have Indian citizenship that can be passed to him.

Alternately is it possible for him to obtain an OCI card? (I've heard that if one's parents or grandparents are from Pakistan or Bangladesh, then he/she is not eligible to apply for an OCI card.

I am not very familiar with OCI, but I believe what you heard is correct -- your son can't get OCI because one of his parents is or was a Pakistani citizen.

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  • India does not allow dual citizenship.So even if they were Indian citizens, their son would never be able to get Indian citizenship. – Dipen Shah Jul 18 '19 at 15:24
  • @DipenShah: Nope. Read India's Citizenship Act, section 4. A child born abroad to an Indian citizen parent is an Indian citizen by descent if registered at an Indian consulate before age 1 with the declaration that they do not hold a foreign passport. Nothing there requires that the child have no other nationality. In fact, subsection (1A) says that an Indian citizen by descent who is also a citizen of another country will lose Indian citizenship if they don't renounce the other citizenship with 6 months of full age; why would they have that if the child cannot have dual citizenship? – user102008 Jul 19 '19 at 6:04
  • @DipenShah: Another way for a child to be born with both Indian and foreign citizenship is if the child is born in India to an Indian citizen and foreign citizen who is not an illegal migrant. The child is an Indian citizen by birth according to section 3; and again it does not require that the child have no other nationality. There is no provision for an Indian citizen by birth to lose Indian citizenship at any age even if they do not renounce foreign citizenships. – user102008 Jul 19 '19 at 6:06
  • @DipenShah: If you look at the Indian embassy to the US's page on registration of birth of children born in the US, it talks about getting an Indian passport for the child, so obviously it is possible for children born in the US to have Indian citizenship. – user102008 Jul 19 '19 at 6:14
  • Well you are talking about a temporary citizenship until they turn 18. But after that they must choose. To me that does not sound like dual citizenship as it exists in other countries. Yes its possible to get Indian citizenship for a minor until they are 18. But they must choose after. But this information was good to know and I was not aware of it. – Dipen Shah Jul 19 '19 at 11:19

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