Citizenship Deprivation: Legality, Bureaucracy, and the Everyday | Radhika Mongia

When and Where

Monday, September 25, 2023 12:30 pm to 2:00 pm
CG 265
Canadiana Gallery
14 Queen's Park Crescent West, Toronto, ON M5S 3K9


Professor Radhika Mongia, York University


Join us for the second seminar of the 2023-24 CrimSL Speaker Series on Monday, September 25!

Professor Radhika Mongia of York University will present "Citizenship Deprivation: Legality, Bureaucracy, and the Everyday."

This is a free event, however, registration is required.

Prior to the seminar, join us for a light lunch from noon to 12:30 pm in the Centre Lounge. Please indicate your lunch RSVP for catering purposes when you register.


This paper considers the troubled – and troubling – terrain of citizenship in India through a focus on two recent events: First, a largely bureaucratic exercise, called the National Register of Citizens (NRC), that sought to ascertain the citizenship of every resident in the north-eastern state of Assam. Covering some 33 million people, the exercise was completed in August 2019 and deemed more than 1.9 million people non-citizens. The second event is a legislative enactment, the passage of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), in December 2019. Working as a de facto and highly selective refugee law, the legislation makes provisions for people of six non-Muslim faiths from three neighboring Muslim-majority countries (Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan) to gain Indian citizenship. The most important consequences raised by these twin transformations undoubtedly concern the quotidian dimensions of everyday life that is now palpably shaped by the definition of, and changes in, the legal category of the Indian citizen (including suspending jus soli birthright citizenship); by the operation of bureaucratic measures, deployed to wilfully produce statelessness; by the massive expansion of an opaque detention apparatus; and by the diverse forms of protest (often profoundly antagonistic to each other) that these measures provoked. This paper examines this tangle of issues to ask what they can tell us about contemporary forms of citizenship and of citizenship deprivation – in India and more broadly.

About Professor Radhika Mongia

Radhika Mongia is associate professor of sociology at York University. She is the author of Indian Migration and Empire: A Colonial Genealogy of the Modern State (Duke University Press, 2018 and Permanent Black Press, 2019).

Visit her York University Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies faculty profile.


Please note that CG 265 is on the second floor of the Canadiana Gallery building, with stair access only as there is no elevator. If you have any access needs or if there are any ways we can support your full participation in this session, please email and we will be glad to work with you to make the appropriate arrangements.

Health & Safety

We are following health and safety measures outlined by the University of Toronto and the Government of Ontario. Should there be changes in protocols related to health and safety of our guests and community, registrants will be advised.



14 Queen's Park Crescent West, Toronto, ON M5S 3K9