New Delhi: New York-based author and journalist Aatish Taseer is ineligible for Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) card as he had "concealed" the fact that his late father was of Pakistani origin, the government said on Thursday night.
Aatish Taseer is the son of senior journalist Tavleen Singh, an Indian, and late Salman Taseer, a Pakistani businessman and politician. Salman Taseer was assassinated in the year 2011 while he was serving as the Governor of Pakistan's Punjab province.
Taseer had authored the Time magazine cover story, published on the heels of the national election earlier this year, which called Prime Minister Narendra Modi “India’s Divider In Chief” and asked whether India can endure five more years of his government.
"Mr. Aatish Ali Taseer, while submitting his PIO application, concealed the fact that his late father was of Pakistani origin," the Union Home Ministry spokesperson tweeted.
"Mr. Taseer was given the opportunity to submit his reply/objections regarding his PIO/OCI cards, but he failed to dispute the notice," the spokesperson said in another tweet.
"Thus, Aatish Ali Taseer becomes ineligible to hold an OCI card as per the Citizenship Act, 1955. He has clearly not complied with very basic requirements and hidden information," it added.
“This is untrue. Here is the Consul General’s acknowledgment of my reply. I was given not the full 21 days, but rather 24 hours to reply. I’ve heard nothing from the ministry since,” he tweeted.
An OCI card allows a foreign citizen of Indian origin to live and work in India for an indefinite duration of time.