Citizenship Blog

About the Blog Our Citizenship Blog invites contributions and comments on recent policy reforms, court judgments or public debates related to citizenship status and access to voting rights, in one or several countries covered by the EUDO CITIZENSHIP Observatory. Our Read More …

Paths to Citizenship, Paths to Statelessness

The National Registry of Citizens (NRC) provides paths to statelessness for groups that are not preferred, by ostensibly sorting nationals from non-nationals, but in effect doing this on the basis of religion. This is why, though the idea of the NRC itself is not new, what its current avatar does to the legal and constitutional idea of citizenship is new. It seeks to identify those that cannot prove their ancestry in India and, in the first instance, disenfranchise, but in the longer run possibly deport or confine them in detention centres.

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The National Registry of Citizens: Violating Muslims, Violating Humanity in Assam

The National Registry of Citizens (NRC) is a platform for divisive parochial politics, an anti-human project that reduces people into statistics and numbers. In India, the British colonials had introduced the census of people beginning from 1872. The effort was to categorise and box the colonial subjects within classificatory schemes of religions, castes, tribes, and so on. This was very confusing to the people of India. The current NRC is a further regression into undermining humanity. The individual human person disappears into an abstract NRC number and is recognisable only if she/he has that mark. It is such an unusual exchange, yet it reassures the people that this is what they want.

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India’s National Register of Citizens: Fine intentions, Ominous portents

The border state of Assam in Northeastern India has had a long history of migration from the neighbouring region that is now Bangladesh. This migration began well before the partition of India in 1947, when the international border between eastern Bengal (which became East Pakistan and subsequently Bangladesh) and India came into existence. Since the 1970s, a decade that began with Bangladesh’s war of independence from Pakistan, the phenomenon of ‘suffraged non-citizens’ has been the cause of intense political controversy in Assam. Yet the legacy of the 1947 partition makes this issue more than just a matter of undocumented cross-border migration.

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EU27 citizens must keep their voting rights in local government elections

The Withdrawal Agreement does not guarantee the maintenance of existing local government electoral rights for those covered by its remit, let alone suggest a framework for such rights to accrue for other EU27 citizens and UK citizens were the UK to leave the EU. This, in turn, has led the government to reach agreements with Spain, Portugal and Luxembourg on preserving reciprocal voting rights in local government elections.

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