Great joy as court restores man's citizenship


  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 13 Aug 2003

BY CHELSEA L.Y. NG

KUALA LUMPUR: Come this Dec 31, Sri Paranthaman Ayarpadde can finally celebrate his youngest son’s second birthday without being reminded of the loss of his Malaysian citizenship. 

The 35-year-old scrap metal merchant had his citizen status restored by the High Court after the Home Ministry, National Registration Department director-general and the Government consented to a declaration that the revocation of his status as a Malaysian since Nov 14, 1997, was void, invalid and had no effect. 

Sri Paranthaman’s nightmare began in 2001, two weeks after the birth of his fourth and youngest son, Hares Prasad, when he applied for his son’s birth certificate and found that he was classified as a “non-citizen” in the birth certificate. 

After two years of fighting for his citizenship including going to various government offices and filing an action in court, Sri Paranthaman finally got his citizenship reinstated yesterday. 

The parties also agreed that the alias name of “Paranthaman Ayarpadi” should be deleted from Sri Paranthaman’s name in his identity card. 

With the consent judgment, which was recorded by Judicial Commissioner Mokhtaruddin Baki, two-year-old Hares Prasad too could have his father’s original name restored and the words “non-citizen” in the paternal column of his birth certificate replaced. 

The defendants, however, did not provide any reason as to why they had agreed to restore his citizenship status. 

Paranthaman’s counsel, M. Manoharan later said his client had been told verbally during a meeting that a person with the name “Paranthaman Ayarpadi” had voted in an election in India and according to the Constitution, no Malaysian could hold two citizenships at the same time.  

In his originating summons, Paranthaman said the revocation was a contravention of his rights under the Constitution as he had not been given an opportunity to appear in any inquiry before his citizenship, which was granted to him since birth, was taken away. 

He said the department had been sending notices and letters to him in India when he was actually living in Bandar Baru Sri Petaling here. 

He said his parents had sent him to India to study when he was six and he returned in 1983 at the age of 15.  

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