India must cooperate with the United States to reduce visa backlogs. Details here


India’s External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar, on Wednesday assured the Biden administration of all necessary cooperation to help resolve the backlog of visa applications from Indians wishing to travel to the United States. He also hoped that things would improve soon.

It comes a day after Jaishankar during his meeting with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken brought up the delay in visa applications which the senior US diplomat said he was sensitive to the issue and had a plan to address it. Indians make up a large portion of recipients of H-1B visas and other work visas given to skilled foreign workers, many of them in the tech industry.

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“But I again think this is an issue where obviously it’s mainly for the United States but we will be supportive and collaborative,” Jaishankar told the news agency. ANI in response to a question asked about people facing visa issues.

He further added, “To those concerned about visa issues, I would like to convey the message that I understand their anxiety and urgency and that is precisely why I have addressed the issue,” and suggested to Blinken that India would help the United States better manage the situation.

The waiting period for Indians seeking a visitor visa to the United States has increased to 800 days, according to the US State Department website. The waiting period is nearly 400 days for student/exchange visitor visas and other non-immigrant visas.

Given the current wait times, the waiting period for nonimmigrant visas to the United States has now increased to over two years. In Delhi, the waiting period is 833 calendar days for visitor visas, 430 calendar days for student/exchange visitor visas and 390 calendar days for all other non-immigrant visas. In Mumbai, the waiting period is 848 calendar days for visitor visas, 430 calendar days for student/exchange visitor visas and 392 calendar days for all other non-immigrant visas.

At the press conference in Washington, the Foreign Secretary expressed concern that the families could not meet and the students had been waiting for a long time and highlighted it as a “really serious” problem .

“In India, I mean, there are families who cannot meet their relatives there and people who cannot meet their business appointments. There are students who wait a long time. So, it’s really it’s really serious. problem of a certain magnitude.”

“But I am very confident, with the sincerity that Secretary Blinken has shown and the seriousness with which I hope they will address this issue and with all the support we can give, we hope that things will improve” , added EAM addressing the efforts of the governments of the two countries during the press conference.

Earlier on Tuesday, Blinken had also assured that the United States was “rebuilding” the backlog of visa applications from Indian nationals and said the Biden administration had a plan that would unfold in the coming months.

“We had COVID constraints on how many people we could have in our embassies at any one time etc. We’re now rebuilding very determined really from these growing resources. visas that have been piling up, I think you’ll see that play out in the coming months,” Blinken said during a press briefing.

The remarks came as he was meeting with EAM Jaishankar in Washington.

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Jaishankar pointed out the concerns and challenges that Indians face in obtaining visas to work and live in the United States.

“There have been challenges lately, and I have reported this to Secretary Blinken and his team, and I am confident that they will look at some of these issues seriously and positively,” Jaishankar said in his remarks. opening.

“I’m extremely sensitive to that,” Blinken said, blaming the Covid-19 pandemic for the backlog.

“Our ability to issue visas has dropped dramatically during COVID. And the last thing we want to do is make it harder. On the contrary, we want to make it easier. So bear with us. the next few months but we’re very focused on that,” added Blinken.

Earlier on September 8, embassy officials said the US mission in India had issued a record 82,000 student visas in 2022 so far, adding that Indian students had received more US student visas than those from any other country.

(ANI)

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