New Delhi: As many Indians dream of acquiring US citizenship amid Trump administration's tough rules, the percentage of country natives who obtained US naturalisation during 2017 has increased by 10%. A total of 50,802 Indians became US citizen, just second to Mexico, which saw a 14% growth in the same year.
Even though there was a drop of six percent in FY2017, over 4,500 more Indians were sworn in as US citizens, only next to Mexico. According to a report in The Times of India, the largest numeric increase in naturalisation occurred among immigrants born in Mexico (increase of 15,009, or 14%), India (4,614, 10%) and China (1,880, 5%).
The news organisation quoted a data released recently by the US department of homeland security and stated that immigration experts say those aspiring to become US citizens are now finding it tougher.
According to the New York Times, US President Donald Trump plans to cap the number of refugees that can be resettled in the United States next year at 30,000. The number represents the lowest ceiling a president has placed on the refugee program since its creation in 1980, and a reduction of a third from the 45,000-person limit that Trump set for 2018.
Despite that, the naturalisation upswing comes close on the heels of the reported 8.3 lakh growth in the number of Indian immigrants entering the US over the past seven years. The TOI report stated that in aggregate, seven lakh individuals were conferred citizenship by the US government during the fiscal year 2017 (period between October 1, 2016 and September 30, 2017), of which Indians constituted seven percent. As compared to the previous year, 4,600 more Indians were conferred US citizenship during 2017.
The naturalisation process confers US citizenship upon foreign nationals who have met relevant requirements. Post this, they obtain the right to vote.
Normally, only green cardholders can opt for the naturalisation process. While a green card is a permit to live and work long term in the US, the flux in visa policies and the focus on more jobs for citizens is inducing many green card-holders to opt for US citizenship, TOI quoted immigration experts as saying.