//Two-year-old Kashmir boy granted Indian citizenship

Two-year-old Kashmir boy granted Indian citizenship

Web posted at: 6/4/2006 2:34:52
Source ::: QNA

ISLAMABAD • Ending confusion about his nationality, India has decided to grant citizenship to a two-year-old toddler who lost his parents in last year’s earthquake in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

Movez Ishaq, who had a Pakistani father and Indian mother, was dug out alive along with his elder brother from the rubble of the October 8, 2005 quake in which an estimated 17,000 children died in the two parts of Kashmir.

It has been decided to grant Indian passport to Ishaq as a humanitarian gesture so that he could be sent to Srinagar to be brought up by his maternal grandparents, an official of the Indian high commission here told PTI. His plight came to the notice of the Indian mission when his paternal grandfather Abdul Ahad applied for the Indian passport for Ishaq on may 18.

A decision to grant the child the Indian citizenship was taken on May 24 and it was subsequently conveyed to Ahad, the Indian official said, rejecting a recent media report that there was any delay in granting travel papers to the toddler. Normally it takes some time to verify details but in this case a decision was taken in less than week on humanitarian grounds as the child wanted to go to his maternal grand parents.

More than 73,000 people were killed and thousands more injured when the 7.6 magnitude quake ripped through Kashmir and NWFP province on 8 October 2005.