26, February, 2024
HomeWorldOver 59,000 Indians Attain US Citizenship in 2023, Claiming 6.7% of New Citizens

Over 59,000 Indians Attain US Citizenship in 2023, Claiming 6.7% of New Citizens

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In a significant development, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently released its annual progress report for 2023, revealing that over 59,000 Indians were granted legitimate US citizenship during the fiscal year ending on September 30, 2023. This substantial figure places India as the second-largest source country for new US citizens, following closely behind Mexico.

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The official report discloses that a total of nearly 8.7 lakh foreign nationals acquired US citizenship in the fiscal year 2023. Among them, 1.1 lakh Mexicans accounted for 12.7% of the new citizens, while 59,100 Indians contributed 6.7% to the total. Additionally, the report highlights that 44,800 new citizens (5.1%) originated from the Philippines, and 35,200 (4%) from the Dominican Republic.

To qualify for naturalization and receive US citizenship, applicants must fulfill specific eligibility criteria outlined in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Generally, this includes being a lawful permanent resident (LPR) for a minimum of five years. The USCIS report also notes special provisions that exempt certain applicants, such as spouses of US citizens and those with military service, from some general naturalization requirements.

Most individuals acquiring US citizenship in FY 2023 were eligible based on being LPRs for at least 5 years (INA Section 316(a)). Following this, applicants eligible as LPRs for at least 3 years and married to a US citizen for the same duration (INA Section 319(a)) constituted the second-largest group. Another significant category included applicants eligible due to their military service during a designated period of hostilities (INA Section 329).

The report emphasizes that, in general, a non-citizen must spend at least 5 years as an LPR to qualify for naturalization, while the spouse of a US citizen must spend at least 3 years as an LPR. The median number of years spent as an LPR for all citizens naturalized in FY 2023 was 7 years.

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Under the USCIS, naturalizations during the fiscal years 2022 and 2023 accounted for nearly a quarter of all naturalizations over the past decade, reflecting a notable trend in the acquisition of US citizenship by individuals from various nations, including India.

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