In 2023 (as of June), 87,000 Indians had renounced their nationality, according to information provided by the Ministry of External Affairs. These people made the decision to become citizens of 135 nations, from the US and Germany to Pakistan and Tonga.
The information was made available in response to a question from Lok Sabha Member Karti Chidambaram.
“The number of Indian nationals exploring the global workplace has been significant in the last two decades. Many of them have chosen to take up foreign citizenship for reasons of personal convenience. The Government is cognisant of this development and has undertaken a range of initiatives centering around ‘Make in India’ that would harness their talents at home,” External Affairs Ministet S. Jaishankar said in his response to Chidambaram’s query.
“Recognising that the Indian community abroad is an asset to the nation, the government has brought about a transformational change in its engagement with the diaspora,” he went on to say.
The number of Indians taking up foreign citizenship remained fairly stable in the previous decade. For example, in 2011, 122,819 persons sought to give up their Indian citizenship. That number had increased marginally to 134,561 in 2018. However, in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, this number witnessed a jump. In 2022, 225,620 persons gave up their Indian citizenship, according to the MEA’s data.
“A successful, prosperous and influential diaspora is an advantage for India and our approach is to tap diaspora networks and utilise their reputation for national gain,” Foreign Minister Jaishankar said.
“The government’s efforts are particularly aimed at encouraging the exchanges of knowledge and expertise in a manner that would contribute to India’s national development,” he concluded in his response.