BJD MP urges External Affairs Minister to address visa issues of overseas Indian students – Edexlive

Biju Janta Dal (BJD) MP Rajya Sabha Amar Patnaik wrote a letter to Union External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Tuesday July 26 and asked him to address the visa issues of emigrating Indian students.

While pointing out that Indian students have encountered problems in the visa process, Amar Patnaik said in a letter to the Minister of External Affairs: “Thousands of Indian students are facing long delays in obtaining visas from major countries such as USA, UK, Germany and Canada etc. even after gaining admission to universities in those countries,” as stated in an ANI report.

The delay is all the more worrying as these countries are among the favorite destinations for pursuing higher education. “Visa hurdles shatter the dreams of many young students. The US Embassy, ​​for example, is fully booked until April 2023 for in-person visa appointments. Likewise, processing time of a Canadian visa involves months while the rejection rate is 50% which was 15-20% in pre-COVID times.Also some countries like Denmark have taken extreme measures to temporarily suspend all new visa appointments,” Odisha’s former chief accountant general said in a letter, according to ANI.

The MP further said that increasing instances of visa denials and delays are prompting Indian students to seek tuition deferral or refund from universities. As a result, he said he wanted to draw attention to the fact that these refunds are partial in nature and therefore cause unnecessary financial and mental stress for these students and their families. Even if postponed, these students will have to apply for scholarships again, he said.

“Contrary to the above situation, Indian missions abroad have been working overtime, if necessary, to issue visas, including clearing all backlogs,” he added according to ANI.

He urged the minister to take urgent action on the matter. “I ask you to take urgent action to persuade the missions/embassies of these countries to streamline the visa process, if necessary, by adopting temporary emergency measures to eliminate the existing backlog so that students required to join the fall semester in these countries can join on time,” Amar Patnaik also said in the letter to S Jaishankar, according to ANI.

Shirlene J. Manley