Operational Bulletins 028 - April 19, 2007

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada staff. It is posted on the Department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

The following provides guidance on how to proceed in cases for landing citizens of India who are unable to obtain a valid passport and/or police certificates

Background

In the fall of 2006, the Operational Management and Coordination Branch (OMC) was advised that the Indian High Commission in Ottawa and the Indian Consulate General in Toronto are not issuing police certificates, or new passports, or extending the validity of current passports, for some citizens of India who reside in Canada. Some citizens of India who have been approved for landing under humanitarian and compassionate (H&C) grounds and under the Spouse and Common-law Partner Class have also been refused requests for passport and/or police verification, if the Indian High Commission determined that such persons do not have valid status in Canada. Consequently, such persons are encountering difficulty in meeting requirements under R50. This is problematic for CIC offices in Ontario and Quebec that wish to proceed with landings.

In order to resolve this issue, CIC met with officials from the Indian High Commission. The High Commission confirmed that they do not provide passports or other consular services to claimants of refugee status. Further to this meeting, CIC has offered to provide an “approval in principle” letter to citizens of India who experience difficulty in obtaining passports and/or police certificates. This letter will serve to confirm to the Indian authorities that the applicant has been approved for landing.

For applicants approved for landing under H&C or the Spouse and Common-law Partner Class, the Indian High Commission has agreed (in principle) to issue passports and/or police certificates provided they are able to verify an applicant’s identity. In order for the Indian authorities to verify identity, the Indian High Commission has asked that applicants provide all their documents of identity along with their requests for passports and/or police certificates. Those citizens of India who fail to provide additional identity verification document(s) to the Indian authorities may encounter difficulties in securing passports and/or police certificates.

Procedures

CIC is still pursuing all possible avenues to fully resolve this issue. In the interim, the following guidelines should be followed to alleviate operational impacts of cases ready for landing.

  • Effective immediately, CIC officers will be required to issue the “approval in principle” letter in Annex 1, to such Indian citizens who are ready for landing.  This letter will serve as a confirmation that the applicant has been approved for landing.
  • CIC officers will instruct these clients that along with their “approval in principle” letters, they will be required to provide every possible identity document(s) in their possession to the Indian authorities when making requests for passports and/or police certificates.
  • In exceptional circumstances, officers may consider waiving passport requirements under A25, however, such exemption should only be invoked if officers are fully satisfied that the circumstances of the case, such as otherwise satisfactory proof of identity, warrant such exemption.
  • When passport exemption under A25 is invoked, officers are required to enter appropriate remarks in FOSS indicating why such exemption was warranted.

Questions

Questions about this operational bulletin should be sent to OMC-Immigration@cic.gc.ca


Annex 1

(Office)

Date

Client ID

Client

Subject: Approval in Principle of Permanent Resident Status in Canada

This letter is in relation to your application for permanent resident status in Canada.

It has been determined that you meet the eligibility requirements to apply for permanent resident status in Canada. However, you will not become a permanent resident until an officer decides that you meet all remaining requirements and are not inadmissible. These requirements include certain documentary requirements, such as having a passport issued by your country of citizenship. You must also meet admissibility requirements by successfully completing medical, security and criminal screening. Meeting admissibility requirements may also apply to all your family members, those living in Canada and abroad, even if they are not applying to join you in Canada at this time. You cannot become a permanent resident until you and all your family members have met these requirements and are not inadmissible.

You must provide us with your valid passport and police certificate. If you do not have a valid passport and police certificate, you can make a request to the nearest Indian Consulate. The decision on whether a passport and police certificate will be provided to you is that of the Indian Government. When making a request for passport and police certificate to the Indian Consulate you will be required to submit this letter along with document(s) deemed by the Indian Consulate to be sufficient to establish your identity.

Thank you for your cooperation.

Immigration Officer

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