The petitioner Akil Piplodwala, a resident of Godhra in Gujarat, had moved to Pakistan in 1976 and returned to India in 1983 to get married to an Indian citizen. In 1991, he permanently shifted back to India with a residential permit and has continued living in Gujarat since.
Apprehending deportation, the petitioner moved a civil court to be declared an Indian citizen under Section 5(1)(C) of the Citizenship Act and sought protection from being sent back to Pakistan.
In 1999, the civil judge partly allowed the plea and granted the protection while stating that it was not the competent court to rule on citizenship.
The State government challenged this ruling 4 years later, and its appeal was allowed in July 2022 by the District Court which quashed the protection granted by civil court.
The District Court’s decision was upheld by the High Court in August prompting the present appeal before the apex court.