Exploring Dual Citizenship: Global Practices and the Indian Context

June 14, 2024
Dual Citizenship

Understanding Dual Citizenship: Global Practices and the Indian Perspective

Dual citizenship refers to a situation where a person is considered a national of two countries at the same time. This bestows upon them all rights and duties of a citizen in both states; they can work, vote, and obtain benefits in either country. Nevertheless, the practice of holding dual citizenship differs from one country to another, and the regulations involved are often not simple.

What is dual citizenship?

Dual citizenship, also referred to as dual nationality, is a situation in which a person is a national of two countries at the same time. This can occur mechanically, for instance, when a person is born to parents of different nationalities or in a country where the laws provide for citizenship through birth. It can also be a result of naturalization, marriage, or any other legal process. Having one or more citizenships is beneficial in many ways, but it also has some responsibilities, including compliance with the legislation.

List of Countries That Accept Dual Citizenship

Currently, most countries allow multiple citizenships, but the conditions may differ.
United States: The United States does allow citizens to have their second citizenship, but they are still citizens of the United States.
Canada: Yes, Canada accepts dual citizenship, which means that a citizen of this country can also be a citizen of another country at the same time.
United Kingdom: The UK practices dual citizenship, which means that an individual is free to possess a British passport in conjunction with another.
Australia: Aussies can have two passports and can enjoy all the rights and be bound by all the obligations of both countries.
France: French citizens can have another nationality while being citizens of France at the same time.
Germany: Germany allows dual citizenship in some cases provided that the person is from an EU country or was born as a dual national.
Sweden: Sweden accepts dual citizenship; therefore, Swedes are allowed to possess passports of two different countries.
Italy: In Italy, it is allowed to be a citizen of another state in addition to being an Italian citizen.

Can Indians hold dual citizenship?

Indian law does not recognize the concept of dual citizenship. As per the Indian constitution, if a person possesses the citizenship of India and also gains the citizenship of any other country, he or she ceases to be an Indian citizen. However, the Indian government has introduced the Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) card that offers many of the rights as an Indian citizen, but it is not dual citizenship.

Which countries does India allow dual citizenship with?

India does not allow its citizens to hold dual citizenship with any other country. Instead, the OCI card holder can permanently reside and work in India as a foreign national without renouncing his or her original nationality. Some of the facilitations that OCI card holders avail of include multiple entries, a multi-purpose lifelong visa for the purpose of visiting India, and no requirement to register with the police authority for any period of stay in India.


This is especially so because dual citizenship allows an individual to enjoy the benefits of two different countries. Although it is common to find countries that allow dual citizenship, the Indian government has not changed its stand on this matter and therefore provides the OCI card to persons of Indian origin. Information on the rules and regulations concerning the acquisition or holding of dual citizenship is important to anyone intending to hold citizenship of more than one country. For more information, it is recommended to turn to official government websites of the above-mentioned countries.

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