As the Trump administration continues to tighten the H-1B visa rules, there has been a 50% rise in citizenship granted to Indians in the period of 10 months ending October 2018. Several thousands of Indians have opted for the Canadian citizenship after spending the specified duration for permanent residence. Nearly 15,000 Indians obtained citizenship during that period, which is a significant rise of 50% from last year.
Responding to queries by Times of India, Canadian authorities said that India has the second-highest number of citizenship applications. The only other country to top India is Philippines. Around 15,642 Filipinos became Canadian citizens in that period, a rise of 11% from last year's 14.058.
On the other hand, 9,992 Indians were granted citizenship in the same period last year, which rose to 15,016 in the period till October this year. According to the data shared with TOI, 1.39 lakh permanent residents became citizens in this period, out of which nearly 11% are Indians. These are, however, preliminary figures and the official figures are estimated to be much higher.
This rise in number is also the result of the reduction of the time period a permanent resident must be present in Canada to receive citizenship. Earlier a permanent resident was required to complete 4 years of residency out of 6 years, which has now been reduced to 3 years out of 5 years.
Citizenship has much more value as compared to permanent residency. A citizen can vote and work in the government sector among various other facilities.
India also offers the highest number of permanent residents. In 2017, 51,000 Indians were granted permanent residency, as mentioned in the annual report submitted to the Canadian Parliament. It toppled Philippines that received 40,857 permanent residencies, followed by China with 30,270.
The Canada Immigration Levels Plan for 2019 to 2021 shows that the country will admit more than a million immigrants in three years.
(Edited by Anwesha Madhukalya)
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