Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Give amnesty to Goans who registered births in Portugal: CM Pramod Sawant to Centre | Goa News – Times of India

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PANAJI: CM Pramod Sawant on Tuesday urged Union govt to grant amnesty to Goans to cancel their Portuguese identity cards, so they can retain their Indian citizenship. Sawant told the ministry of home affairs that the revocation of passports “has been taken in very bad taste by the affected population”, since it may adversely affect their livelihood.
In his letter to the MHA, Sawant said, “Grant an amnesty to Goans for cancellation of assento de nascimento, cartao de cidadao (the Portuguese identity card), to thereby retain their Indian citizenship”.
Sawant said that more than 40,000 Goans have registered their births in Lisbon. “The sole intention of these people was to secure a chance of getting their children Portuguese passports and the benefits that come with it,” he said. The CM also explained to the MHA that mere registration of birth in Lisbon’s central registry doesn’t amount to acquisition of Portuguese nationality.
Getting an OCI card, visa is their right: CM to Centre
Assento de nascimento only documents the birth of a person. Hence, it may not be correct to issue a revocation merely on the basis of it,” he said.
“In December 2015, the Union law ministry stated that mere registration of birth by a Goan in Portugal does not amount to acquiring Portuguese citizenship. Further, the MHA has been advised to obtain affidavits from persons who have registered their birth in Portugal, that they wish to continue to retain their Indian citizenship and do not intend to renounce it,” Sawant said.
Referring to the troubles faced by Goans who registered their births in Portugal, Sawant said, “Getting an OCI card and visa is their right. As said earlier, registration of birth is only with the intent of getting benefits offered by the European Union (EU). A significant number of Goan Christians obtain Portuguese passports and travel to various countries in search of employment. They do visit their homes on a regular basis”.
Sawant said OCI cards should be issued in all cases in which passport authorities ordered a revocation of passport.
“These cases may be treated on par with ‘surrender certificates’ matters,” he said. The MEA and the Union ministry of home affairs may jointly work out a solution to come out of this logjam. Undoubtedly, people who opt for Portuguese nationality are of Goan origin. Their suppression of material information is by inadvertence and not intentional.”

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