• Fri. Jun 9th, 2023

Be Happy Be Healthy

International Law Nationality Individuals of the nation are expected to bear allegiance to their states. Individuals who hold permanent allegiance to the state are considered as nationals of the state. Nationality can therefore be defined as “the status of a person who is related to the state by a bond of allegiance”.


 In the words of Oppenheim – Nationality is the quality of being a person. Nationality is the quality of belonging to the state, which creates a legal relationship between the state and the individual.

According to Kelson- “Nationality is that status of a person which gives him the scientific character of a nation. It gives him the membership by which he is called a member of a group or nation.”

Nationality and citizenship-

 Although nationality and citizenship are considered synonymous on many occasions, they are different from each other. Nationality is a quality related to the state, and by this the individual is known in the world. Thus, nationality creates a legal relationship between the state and the individual under international law.

 Citizenship refers to the relationship between the individual and the national law. The concept of citizenship is inconsistent with international law. Citizens hold all the civil and political rights of the state. In this way all citizens hold the nationality of a state, but it is not necessary that all nationals are citizens of that state.

 National – The person who bears permanent allegiance to the state is known as the national of the state.

Mode of acquisition of nationality

By birth- Nationality is granted on the basis of birth to a person by many states. Persons who are born within the territorial limits of the state acquire the nationality of that state.  This theory is called Jas Souli. Under Section 3 of the Indian Citizenship Act 1955, there is a provision to be a national by birth.

The United Kingdom, the United States, and the states of Latin America follow the jas soli principle.

Lineage– Nationality of a state can also be acquired by a person on the basis of nationality of either of the parents. In this way the child becomes a national of that state, the national of which his parents are. This principle is known as Jas Sanginis. Germany and France grant nationality on the basis of this principle. Many other states like India, America etc also recognize this principle.

By naturalization – When a person acquires the nationality of another state, then the process of acquisition is known as naturalisation. A person can acquire nationality through naturalization in various ways.

These methods are- marriage, option, acquisition of residence, Approval of device and application as government officials. Adoption of a child by parents. It may be said that “the state has the discretion to grant nationality by naturalisation. It may confer nationality on the fulfillment of such conditions as it deems fit.”

By Re-acquisition– A person who loses his nationality by indigenization or for any other reason can acquire the nationality of the same state again. Where is this type of acquisition referred to as amalgamation or recapture.

By subjugation- By subjugation, the defeated person assumes the nationality of the conquering state. By cession – When a state surrenders to another state, the citizens of that state acquire the nationality of that other state.

By choice – When the state is divided into two or more states, then the citizens of the state have the option of being a citizen of any one of the successor states.

By Registration – The person can earn the nationality of the state through registration. The process of registration varies from state to state depending on the national law.

Method of losing nationality –

Liberation – The citizens of some states have been given the right that they can grant freedom from nationality by giving an application.

Deprivation – Such laws have been made by some states, violating which the nationality of the person can be taken away.

 By substitution – If a person of a state accepts the nationality of another country by naturalization, then his nationality ends.

By renunciation – a person can renounce his nationality of the state. The question of renunciation of nationality arises when a person acquires the nationality of more than one state.

 Long stay abroad – In some countries it is a system that if a person stays abroad for more than a certain period, then his nationality is terminated. The term is 5 years in America and 7 years in England and India, but from government service This rule will not apply when going out.

Nationality of married women –

All forms of abolition against women were included in Article 9 of the Act, 1979. Article 1 of the said Act  stipulates that States Parties shall grant to women the same rights as men to acquire, change or retain their nationality. The States shall specifically ensure that neither marriage with a foreigner nor the change of nationality by the husband after the marriage shall automatically result in the change of nationality of the wife, without imposing on her the nationality of the husband.

The United Nations General Assembly adopted the Declaration on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women in 1967. Under Article 5 of this, there is a provision that women shall have the right to acquire the nationality of men.


 When a person does not hold the nationality of a state, he is called a Virashtrik. A person can be a Virashtrik intentionally or unintentionally. Now someone loses his nationality due to some reason and fails to get the nationality of any other state, then his status becomes Statelessness.

 Oppenheim compared a person without nationality to such a ship in the open sea. On which one’s flag or symbol is in it. According to it, the origin of nationalism can be in two circumstances.-

(1) A person can be without nationality by birth.

(2) Taking away the nationality.

To remedy this situation, it was arranged in the 1930 Hague Convention that children whose parents are unknown, such children should be given the nationality of the nation of their birth, as stated in Article 15 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948. It has been said that – “Every person is entitled to acquire nationality” In this declaration it has been emphasized that persons who do not have the nationality of any country should get the nationality of the country where they are born.