Home Ministry issues clarification to Assam govt on citizenship status of members of Gorkha Community

Home Ministry has issued a clarification to the Assam government on the citizenship status of members of the Gorkha Community living in the state as per the Foreigners Act, 1946. This followed a representation from the All Assam Gorkha Students’ Union to Home Minister Rajnath Singh recently as some cases of members of Gorkha community living in the state were referred to the Foreigners Tribunals.

An official release said in a communication to the Assam government, the Home Ministry has listed various provisions to obviate the difficulties faced by Gorkhas in the matter of Indian citizenship.

It has said that members of the Gorkha community who were Indian citizens at the time of commencement of the Constitution, or those who are Indian citizens by birth, or those who have acquired Indian citizenship by registration or naturalization are not foreigners. No such cases will be referred to the Foreigners Tribunals.

The Home Minister also notes that any Gorkha member holding Nepalese nationality and who has arrived in India by land or air over the Nepal border even without a passport or visa and staying in India for any length of time shall not be treated as an illegal migrant, if they are in possession of relevant identity documents.