Local Goa News

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Details of Goans opting for other citizenship sought

PANJIM: In a major move, the South Goa District Administration has written to various embassies in India seeking details of Goans who have opted for foreign nationality so as to delete these names from the electoral roll.
In last five years, the administration has deleted 25,700 names of Goans who have ceased to be Indian nationals from the voters’ list. The information was provided to the Election Commission of India (ECI) when Deputy Election Commissioner Umesh Sinha visited Goa on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Speaking to Herald, South Goa Collector Swapnil Naik said that based on information provided by the Foreigner Regional Registration Office (FRRO), 25,700 names of those who have opted for foreign nationality have been deleted from the voters list. “In the last five years, the people opting for foreign nationality or going for Portuguese passport is on rise,” he said.
Naik said the administration has now written to various embassies in India to furnish data of people, who have opted for foreign nationality. “We have written to them through the Union Ministry for External Affairs (MEA),” he said adding that FRRO has also been asked to provide fresh data.
On Tuesday, Sinha had directed the Chief Electoral Office (CEO) to delete names of those who have ceased to be Indian nationals and have obtained foreign nationality including Portuguese. As per data with the CEO based on FRRO information, there are 27,000 names to be deleted.
The lure of better economic prospects and access to other European nations has led to a large number of Goans switching nationalities, especially seeking Portuguese nationality.
Apart from this, there are thousands of Goans who have registered their births in Portugal – a provision offered by the State’s former colonial rulers to those born before Goa’s liberation in 1961 and to their children – but holding neither a Portuguese passport nor citizen’s card.
The fate of these people will be decided by Union Ministry to be appointed Special Authority, who are the District Collectors, to deal with citizenship issue.

Herald Goa News

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