The Telangana High Court on Wednesday granted relief to Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) MLA Chennamaneni Ramesh, as it ordered the Union Home Ministry, which had earlier cancelled his Indian citizenship, to hear his plea again.
The legislator from Vemulawada had moved court citing Section 10(3) of the Citizenship Act, which states,"The central government shall not deprive a person of citizenĀship under this section unless it is satisfied that it is not conducive to the public good that the person should continue to be a citizen of India"
After hearing the argument of Ramesh's counsel, Justice P Naveen Rao ordered a fresh inquiry and directed the Centre to pass an order on the issue within 12 weeks.
It was in 2017 that the Home Ministry first decided to cancel his citizenship after an earlier directive of the Supreme Court to inquire into and determine the dual citizenship of the TRS MLA.
The apex court's order came after a petition filed by Adi Srinivas, who contested election against him as the BJP candidate in 2014. The combined Andhra Pradesh High Court had set aside Ramesh's election on a petition by Srinivas, who alleged that Ramesh possessed citizenship of Germany.
Srinivas claimed that Ramesh had submitted fake documents, stating that he was in India for continuous one year, to circumvent the rules and contest in the polls.
The Supreme Court had stayed the High Court order and asked the Centre to inquire into Srinivas' complaint in six months. With the Home Ministry not addressing the issue even after one year, the petitioner again approached the apex court, which set a six-week deadline. Following this, Ramesh moved the High Court.
The ruling party legislator maintains that he had surrendered his Indian passport and took German citizenship in 1993. However, in 2009, he applied for the Indian citizenship and was granted the same.
The Representation of Peopleās Act states that any person who is not an Indian citizen is not eligible to contest or vote in any election.