US Citizenship and Immigration Services
US Citizenship and Immigration ServicesReuters

Over 50,000 Indians became American citizens in 2017, reveals a data released recently by the US Department of Homeland Security. Indians acquiring US naturalisation increased by 10 per cent last year, making them the second largest after Mexicans.

Even though there was a drop of six per cent during the fiscal year 2017, about 4,614 more Indians were declared as US citizens as compared to the previous year. According to the data, the largest number of naturalisation occurred among immigrants born in Mexico, which saw an increase of 14 per cent (15,009), followed by India (50,802, 10 per cent) and China (1,880, five per cent).

According to The New York Times, US President Donald Trump plans to limit the number of refugees that can be immigrated to the country at 30,000. The number represents the lowest upper limit a president has placed on the refugee program since its inception in 1980, and a reduction of a third from 45,000 limit that Trump set for 2018.

The National Partnership for New Americans (NPNA) said that the backlog in the processing of citizenship applications is on the rise. The naturalisation backlog has climbed to 7.53 lakh applications, an increase of 93 per cent over the backlog prevailing in 2015.

NPNA and a few other associations filed a complaint on September 17 as the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) failed to respond to a Freedom of Information Act request, made in early August, to provide documents related to the backlog of citizenship applications.

"We are suing USCIS because the Trump administration has created a 'second wall' that is preventing lawfully present immigrants from becoming US citizens and voting. Whether this is a result of hostility to immigrants or willful mismanagement makes no difference. It must stop," The Times of India quoted Joshua Hoyt, executive director at NPNA.