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Twitterati reacts to 800-day delay in US visa application

As the world enters a pandemic recovery mode, the after-effects can be seen in form of the historical backlog in visa applications which has curtailed the mobility of people both in India and abroad

September 28, 2022 / 02:59 PM IST
Representative Image

Representative Image


Blame it on the COVID- induced travel restrictions, US visa services is witnessing a historic backlog in processing applications. In the wake of COVID outbreak, the US had halted almost all visa processing worldwide, which has now resulted in 800-day delay is visa appointments.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar in his meeting with the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on September 27 raised the issue of the backlog of visa applications from India to which the top American diplomat said he is sensitive to the matter and had a plan to address it. However the Indian minister did not specifically mention the H-1B visas issue during the joint presser.

"Bear with us. This will play out over the next few months, but we're very focused on it" , Blinken said in response to a question when asked about the historic delays in visa appointments that now runs into 800 days. On the question of visas, I'm extremely sensitive to this," Blinken said.

Netizens have reacted to this delay in the application process, tweeting out their reactions and expressing their annoyance at the delay.

Jeff M. Smith the Director of the Asian Studies Center at The Heritage Foundation and the author of Cold Peace: China-India Rivalry tweeted about the issue and urged on the need to 'do better'.

 

Ananth Krishnan who works as a correspondent with The Hindu and the author of the book 'India's China Challenge' also tweeted about the delay and compared the U.S. Embassy visa appointment wait times in New Delhi and Beijing.

The COVID-19 pandemic hit the demand for visa's across the globe, however as the world gets back on its feet, many countries have also started  re-looking the visa system to make it faster.

Eearlier this week that Prime Minister Liz Truss is set to launch a major review of UK’s visa system in a move to tackle acute labour shortages in key industries, the Financial Times reported on Sunday.

‘The prime minister is set to defy some of her anti-immigration cabinet colleagues by making changes to the “shortage occupation list’, allowing
certain industries to bring in more staff —such as broadband engineers —

from overseas," the newspaper said.

Visa applications to Canada are also backlogged as demand for the visa surged in the last year post-pandemic. The issue of refusal rates too has unsettled many who aspire to study or settle abroad.

In the light of such a situation the  High Commission of Canada assured that they very well understand the “frustration and disappointment” of Indian students and will continue to take up different measures for reducing the wait time.

“We understand your frustration and disappointment and want to assure you that we are working to improve the situation. In fact, we have been processing applications throughout the year, including study permits for the September 2022 intake’, the high commission said.

Resolving to take up the matter, the Indian High Commission in Ottawa informed students, “Highlighting these issues and the fact that Indian students have already deposited tuition fees with the Canadian institutions we requested the Canadian authorities to expedite processing of visa applications for students from India’.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Sep 28, 2022 11:47 am