Deepan Budlakoti remains stateless



DEEPAN Budlakoti, 24, a Canadian-born Indian (South Asian), will remain stateless after a Federal Court of Canada judge rejected his claim for Canadian citizenship.

Budlakoti was ordered deported in 2011 after being sentenced to three years for weapons and drug offences, but India’s position is that he is not an Indian citizen. Because of a technicality – his parents were reportedly employed with the then-Indian high commissioner, which meant that their kid had diplomatic immunity – his Canadian birth didn’t give him the automatic right to citizenship.

But Budlakoti argued he was born a few months after his parents stopped working for the high commission and that that had been confirmed by the then-high commissioner. He has an Ontario birth certificate and was issued a Canadian passport, but the government maintains that he shouldn’t have been issued a passport.

Justice Michael Phelan rejected Budlakoti’s sworn affidavits and accepted what he said were more reliable documentary evidence that indicated his parents left the Indian High Commission in December 1989, two months after his birth.