Minorities from Pakistan and Bangladesh will be allowed to stay in India, even if they don't have valid documents, if they arrived on or before 31st December 2014, said the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA).

Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju, in response to a written question in the Parliament, said exemption was being given to Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians who arrived on or before 31 December, 2014.

"Immigrants from Bangladesh can obtain Indian citizenship under the provisions of Citizenship Act, 1955 and the rules made there under. People residing in Indian enclaves on the iBangladesh side of the border are already Indian citizens.

"However, 14,864 people residing in erstwhile Bangladeshi enclaves on Indian side of the border have been granted Indian citizenship with effect from August 1, 2015, the date of transfer of enclaves, as per the provisions of section 7 of Citizenship Act, 1955," PTI quoted him as saying.

980 residents from the erstwhile Bangaldeshi enclaves have opted for Indian citizenship. During the Indo-Bangla land swap in August 2015, more than 150 pockets of land were swapped. India had 111 enclaves, or chhitmahals, inside Bangladesh where 37,000 people lived, whereas 14,000 lived in 51 Bangladeshi enclaves in India.

In July, 70 Hindu families from Pakistan's Sindh Province came to India. They had been allowed to stay in the New Aruna Nagar area in North Delhi.

The MHA was unavailable for comment on the residentship of these 70 families.