INDIA Cautions United States Against Tweaking H1-Visa Policy

October 26th, 2017 | by Sukumar Roy
INDIA Cautions United States Against Tweaking H1-Visa Policy
News
0

 

INDIA has conveyed concern to The United States of America over curtailing quota of L-1 Visas being given to Indian professionals for working in the North American nation. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj took up the issue relating to H 1 visa with her counterpart Rex Tillerson while interacting with him in New Delhi.POTUS Donald Trump’s stand on H-1 Visa has alarmed the Indian professionals and GOI has taken it up with the Trump administration repeatedly as there is no clarity about it from Washington. Swaraj told Secretary of State Tillerson The United States should refrain from changing the rules regarding  H-1 and L-1 visas that would inconvenience Indian professionals.GOI has also urged the Trump administration to end the impasse over the totalisation agreement to help the half a million Indians working on non-immigration visas avoid double taxation on social security.EAM Swaraj  told the visiting Secretary of State the proposed changes to H-1B and L-1 visa programmers by the Trump administration  would constrain skilled foreign professionals to work in the United States. Speaking to media persons after concluding his official visit Tillerson, said on Wednesday “We also discussed (during the meeting) the very significant contribution to the US economy made by  Indian skilled professionals who travel and work under H-1B and L-1 visa programmes..” Trump’s ‘America first’ rhetoric and promise to protect US jobs raised concerns back home that his policies would hit Indian IT professionals harder. Sushma referred to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services issued  guidance policy memorandum on “H-1B computer related positions” asking petitioners sponsoring computer programmers to offer proof that the position sought is a specialized occupation. This would potentially restrict American companies to import foreign professionals through H1B visa programme to work in its IT industry. Trump has  issued an executive order -“Buy American and Hire American”- calling various departments of his administration to rigorously enforce laws on foreign workers’ entry into the US to create higher wages and rate of employment for locals. The order also asked US officials to suggest reforms to ensure H-1B visas are awarded to the most-skilled or highest-paid beneficiaries. The US has also laid severe restrictions on renewal of non-immigrant visas like H-1B and L-1 by putting the onus of proof on the applicants even when they seek extension. The US Congress is currently considering six Bills that seek to change the H-1B and L-1 visa programmes to restrict foreign professionals to stay and work in America. While asking the administration to refrain from making further changes to the visa regimes, India has also urged US lawmakers to resist any such moves in the Congress.“I have also sought Secretary Tillerson’s support for resolution of long-pending issue of tantalization and asked that nothing such should be done by US which adversely affects India’s interests,” Sushma said at a press conference .Tillerson at a joint press conference with his Indian counterpart Sushma in New Delhi called  India an emerging leader in the region. New Delhi is crucial to the US’ Afghanistan strategy. “India is a natural partner in our fight against terrorism,” he said. Referring to Pakistan harbouring terrorist outfits, Tillerson said  “In my discussions in Islamabad, we were frank to conclude that there are too many terrorist outfits that find a safe haven in Pakistan. We are putting in place a mechanism to deny these outfits the ability to launch attacks on other countries.We want to work with Pakistan in a positive way as we think this is in their interest in the long run.” Replying to a query  if India is ready to cut diplomatic ties with North Korea, Swaraj said trade relations with Pyongyang are at a minimum, but it is important to continue having an embassy in the country. “I told Tillerson that some of your friendly nations must have an embassy there in North Korea for any possible communication,” she said.The Ministry of External Affairs had earlier tweeted to say that the meeting between Swaraj and Tillerson touched on bilateral, regional and global issues “to further strengthen bonds of friendship”.Tillerson and Sushma touched upon several bilateral, regional and international topics. Among these were  US-India relations and Pakistan harbouring terrorist outfits. India-US relations have deepened after Narendra Modi’s United States visit,” Sushma Swaraj said, adding that she was privileged to meet Tillerson for the second time in a month, following their meeting at the United Nations General Assembly summit.Swaraj also said that Tillerson recognised India’s role in the development of the region, further informing that India, US and Afghanistan will hold a trilateral meet in December. Condemning terrorism, Sushma said “Recent attacks in Afghanistan are proof that safe havens and supporters of terrorism are active”.

.

.

Share this:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

UA-62652249-1