Category Archives: Media Coverage

Kingstonians rally for man stripped of health care

Kingstonians rally for Deepan BudlakotiKingston Heritage, 27 November 2014, Aric McBay

Rallies took place in Kingston and Toronto on Wednesday to support a man who has lost his citizenship and health-care coverage because of a legal loophole. Deepan Budlakoti was born in Canada in 1989 and granted Canadian citizenship, but his citizenship was revoked by the federal government in an extremely unusual act in 2010, leaving him stateless.

Mr. Budlakoti was recently informed by the Ontario Ministry of Health that as a stateless person they believed he was no longer entitled to health care; his OHIP coverage was revoked.

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Ottawa-born man facing deportation says OHIP coverage has been revoked

CFRA, 26 November 2014, Alison Sandor

There’s a new hurdle in the case of an Ottawa-born and raised man who is facing deportation.

Deepan Budlakoti said he is now being denied OHIP coverage, even though he has an Ontario birth certificate and had been issued a Canadian passport in 2003.

Budlakoti’s parents were working at the Indian High Commission around the time of his birth. He said they had stopped working for the High Commission prior to his birth.

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Immigration Reform Allows Canada to Strip Citizenship

Deepan Budlakoti at MP Pierre Poilievre's office in August 2013 to request a meeting. (Photo courtesy of the "Justice for Deepan" collective)Free Speech Radio News, October 1, 2014

A new law in Canada makes it possible for Canadian authorities to strip citizenship as a result of criminal activity. The first such case, in which a Canadian born-man’s citizenship is in question, is currently in court and may set an important legal precedent. Erin Hudson has the details from Toronto.

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The Strengthening Canadian Citizenship Act – also known as Bill C-24 – became law in June amid widespread criticism from Canadian civil rights organizations. Supporters of the legislation say it streamlines the naturalization process and will greatly reduce the backlog of pending cases. Critics point out it gives the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration discretionary power to strip citizenship from Canadians convicted of certain criminal offenses.

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Canada’s failed responsibility to Deepan Budlakoti

Stacy Douglas, rabble.ca, 24 September 2014

On Tuesday September 9, the Federal Court released its decision in the case of Deepan Budlakoti, an Ottawa-born man fighting to regain the citizenship he lost four years ago. Justice Phelan refused to declare Budlakoti a citizen — noting that such action is a matter for the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration –and ruled that Budlakoti’s rights under section 6 and 7 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms have not been infringed.

The decision means that Budlakoti will continue to live under the authority of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA). He is now left in legal limbo, effectively stateless and eternally incarcerated. Yet he was born in Canada, holds an Ontario birth certificate, a Canadian passport and has no other nationality.

Central to Phelan’s decision is the question of whether Budlakoti’s parents were employed by the Indian High Commissioner in Ottawa at the time of his birth. Section 3 of the Citizenship Act states that children of diplomats and other foreign officials born on Canadian soil are not considered citizens of this country.

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