Sunday, 17 November, 2019

Aatish Taseer says 'sinister plan' saw him stripped of Indian citizenship

Aatish Taseer described his overseas Indian citizenship as a “permanent visa” to travel to India and feared that he would be blacklisted from entering the country to visit his mother and grandmother Aatish Taseer says 'sinister plan' saw him stripped of Indian citizenship
Patty Aguilar | 08 November, 2019, 23:27

The Indian government has revoked the citizenship of Aatish Taseer, a New York-based journalist and the son of the late Salman Taseer and Indian journalist Tavleen Singh. What is an OCI card and how to apply for it?

The home ministry also said that Taseer had been given an opportunity to represent his side but he had failed to do so.

The spokesperson also denied that the government had been considering revoking Taseer's OCI card after he wrote an article in the TIME magazine, which was critical of the prime minister, saying the news was a "complete misrepresentation and is devoid of any facts".

Aatish Taseer was born in Britain and now lives in the United States.

The 39-year-old author stated that he responded to the office of the Indian consul general in NY despite having just a day to do so. Salman Taseer served as the governor of Punjab from 2008 until his assassination in 2011.

On November 7, ThePrint had reported on the fact that MHA had been considering revoking Taseer's OCI card-holder status. In it, he called Modi "at once an inevitability and a calamity for India". Posting a screenshot of an acknowledgement from the deputy consul general on Twitter, he claimed he had received the letter seeking his response in September on the 20th day into the 21-day period that he had to write back to the government. His mother is Indian columnist Tavleen Singh.

Writing for Time magazine in May, Taseer had wondered if India could endure another five years of the Modi government.

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In his latest article for Time, Mr Taseer said he had expected a "reprisal" for the earlier piece but not a "severing".

The writer was subsequently bitterly criticised by leaders of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, including Mr Modi, who brought up his Pakistani origins to discredit him and his views.

Aatish Ali Taseer's father was Pakistani citizen, he was never an Indian citizen, and was never eligible to become Indian citizen as per law, therefore he is not eligible to obtain the OIC card as per the provisions of the Citizenship Act, 1955.

"She had raised me on her own in Delhi and was always my sole legal guardian, and the only parent I knew for most of my life".

Penning his reaction for Time, also the publication that carried the original article at the heart of the controversy, Taseer clarifies the question of his citizenship. "The relationship is so instinctive that, like an unwritten constitution, I had never before felt it necessary to articulate it".

According to Home Ministry guidelines, one of the grounds on which OCI registration can be cancelled is when it "becomes necessary to do so in the interest of the sovereignty, integrity and security of India". "I've heard nothing from the ministry since".

Not only did he immediately take to Twitter to refute the MHA's claim that he had hidden this widely known information, through his writings across the years Taseer has done very little to hide the fact that his father is Pakistani. "All critical voices are snooped on, harassed or muzzled".

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