CanIndia, 19 July 2013
A Canada-born man of Indian descent, who has served time in jail, is now fighting to stay on in the country of his birth.
The case of Deepan Budlakoti, 23, has come under the radar of news organizations that are studying and writing about it. Budlakoti was born Oct 19, 1989 to Indian parents who had come to work as household support staff at the Indian High Commission in Ottawa.
He holds a birth certificate issued by the Canadian province of Ontario but his passport has been revoked by Canadian authorities who want to deport him to India, a country he has never visited to date.
Citizenship and Immigration Canada says his passport application claimed incorrectly that he was a citizen and that he was convicted, and served significant jail time for trafficking both weapons and drugs. The parents later worked for an Ottawa university professor, became landed immigrants and then went on to become Canadian citizens.
As a teenager, their son applied and got a Canadian passport. Now that Budlakoti has served three years in prison for crimes he committed and his passport has been revoked, the Canadian Border Service Agency (CBSA) is trying to convince India that it should take him back.
India has rejected the request.
Kapil Sharma, consular officer at the Indian mission, has told the CBSA that Budlakoti was not an Indian citizen.
Budlakoti admits he did “stupid things” but says he is older now and wants to move on with life in Canada.
But the big problem before him is that he does not have a work permit, given his past record. At the same time, India does not seem to be an option for him.
“I don’t know anyone there (in India), I have no family there. I have nothing there,” he was quoted as saying.
The fact is that he was born and raised in Canada and is for all practical purposes Canadian.