4.5 Lakh Indians Acquired Foreign Citizenship in 3 Years: Govt

A total of 4,52,109 Indian nationals acquired foreign citizenship in 117 countries from 2014 to 2017, Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh said.


More than 4.5 lakh Indian nationals acquired foreign citizenship from years 2014 to 2017, according to data available with the Ministry of External Affairs.

A total of 452,109 Indian nationals acquired foreign citizenship in 117 countries from years 2014 to 2017 (till date), Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh said in Parliament on Dec. 27 in response to a question. As many as 46,188 Indians became naturalized citizens of the United States, according to 2016 Yearbook of Immigration Statistics, he said. In 2015, the number of Indians who were naturalized in the United States was 42,213.

In 2016, the highest number of Indians were naturalized in California (10,298), followed by New Jersey (5,312), Texas (4,670), and New York (2,954). The growing number of Indians being naturalized can be attributed to the large number of high skilled professionals based in the United States. This is followed by the Indians who are engaged in various business activities, Singh said.

The MEA data differs from the U.S. naturalization records. According to MEA records, 18,874 Indians acquired U.S. citizenship in 2015, while 22,999 acquired U.S. citizenship in 2016, and 20,327  in 2017.

There was a sharp fall in the number of Indians who received citizenship in 2017 in the United Kingdom, according to the MEA. While in 2014, 37,693 acquired citizenship, the number went down in 2015 to 27,771. In 2016, 28,720 Indians got citizenship in UK while in 2017, the corresponding number was only 19,882.

In Australia, 20,948 Indians acquired citizenship in 2017, a decline from previous years. In 2016, 23,073 received citizenship, while the number in 2015 was 23,365.

An estimated 31 million overseas Indians live across the world, including 18 million persons of Indian origin and 13 million NRIs. Nearly 1.3 Non-Resident Indians and 3.2 million persons of Indian origin, the maximum number in any country, live in the United States. Marshall Islands in the central Pacific Ocean recorded just one person of Indian origin.

Nearlt 3.3 million NRIs live in Saudi Arabia, the largest in any country, and the fewest, just one, in Micronesia, according to the MEA.

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