Apex court upholds Home Ministry’s decision to provide citizenship by descent

Published On: April 16, 2019 05:40 PM NPT

KATHMANDU, April 16: The Supreme Court has upheld the decision of Ministry of Home Affair’s (MoHA) circular ordering all districts to issue citizenship by descent.    

The decision comes a week (April 9) after the apex court had issued an interim order to suspend the MoHA’s circular.

A division bench of Justice Hari Krishna Karki and Bam Kumar Shrestha decided to do so after advocate Balkrishna Neupane challenged the Home Ministry's circular.

On April 7, Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa had said the provision on the citizenship by descent came as per the court verdict and the constitution.

“Citizenship to such children has been constitutionally guaranteed,” he said in Pokhara. 

After the Supreme Court’s interim order, the Rastriya Janata Party Nepal (RJP-N) had expressed dissatisfaction over the Court's stay order asking authorities not to issue citizenship by descent to the offspring of those who were given citizenship by birth. 

According to official records at the Home Ministry, altogether 190,726 individuals had obtained citizenship by birth, based on the special decision.

On April 4, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA) had issued circulars to all 77-district administration offices to issue citizenship by descent to the children of those obtaining citizenship by birth, as the bill to amend the Citizenship Act is still under discussion in the federal parliament.

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