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Act No35 of 2003 PDF Print E-mail
Grant of Citizenship to Persons of Indian Origin Act no 35 of 2003
3,42,000 persons out of above mentioned 5,06,000 persons were repatriated to India , with their natural increase, after granting Indian citizenship, up to year 1983. The balance 1,64,000 persons and their natural increase could not repatriated to India due to certain problems such as trafficking and sheltering in Tamil Nadu aroused with the ethnic conflict of Sri Lanka started in 1983. Some of them were not granted with Indian citizenship, some were granted and issued with Indian travel documents, but continued to reside in Sri Lanka. Grant of citizenship to persons of Indian origin act no; 35 of 2003 was enacted to grant Sri Lankan citizenship to them. The status of citizen of Sri Lanka was conferred on them with effect from the date of commencement (2003-11-11) of this act.  Provided however, the grant of the status of a citizen of Sri Lanka to a permanent resident, who on the date of coming into operation of this Act, holds an Indian Passport or other similar document, shall be effective only on his forwarding to the Commissioner a declaration in the special form of declaration set out in the Schedule, stating his intention to voluntarily acquire citizenship of Sri Lanka, and upon such declaration being acknowledged by the Commissioner in writing. In this Act, 'Commissioner' means the Commissioner for the Registration of Persons of Indian Origin.This act was amended once, to make provision to enable persons who were permanent residents of Sri Lanka with Indian origin since 30 October 1964 and their descendents who were compelled to leave Sri Lanka due to reasons beyond their control and are presently residing in India, to have the status of citizen of Sri Lanka with effect from the date of commencement of the principal enactments by the Amendment Act no 06 of 2009. With the enactment of this act, long term existed problem on citizenship of Indian origin persons of Sri Lanka was solved and concluded.

Significant differences of act no 39 of 1988 & act no 35 of 2003 when compare with previous enactments on citizenship
In all previous enactments, a person has to apply for citizenship and it has to be granted under the law, by registration. It was completely different in these two enactments. The status of Sri Lanka citizenship was conferred on all eligible persons of Indian origin who have not obtained Sri Lanka citizenship under the previous enactments. They need not to apply for it, but got it effortlessly.
Further, there was no requirement to have a citizenship certificate to prove their citizenship. It was ordered to accept an affidavit as prima facie evidence of status of citizenship of such a person, for any purpose under section 4 of both acts.

Grant of Citizenship to Chinese Origin Persons act no 38 of 2008
Even after the conclusion of the citizenship problem of the Indian origin persons, there was small number of persons of Chinese origin, living in Sri Lanka as stateless. Most of them or their parents have immigrated to Sri Lanka during the Second World War period, before independence. Therefore this law was enacted to grant them with Sri Lanka citizenship by registration with effect from 31 October 2008. This act shall be in force for a period of five years from that date. So it will be terminated on 30 October 2013. Person who is entitled for Sri Lankan citizenship under this law, should forward his applications to the controller of immigration and emigration. After scrutinizing the application the controller should transmit it to the minister for approval. When the approval is granted, applicant has to make or subscribe the oath or affirmation as required by the act, and he will be deem to be a citizen of Sri Lanka from that date.  With the enactment of this law, stateless problem of Sri Lanka was solved and came to a conclusion.