Published: 05th January 2023
US issues nearly 1,25,000 student visas for Indians, breaking an all-time record
US officials said that visa processing is recovering faster than projected and is expected to reach pre-pandemic processing levels soon
Speaking at a press conference, State Department spokesperson Ned Price said, "Our embassy and consulates in India broke their all-time record for the number of student visas issued in the single fiscal year 2022. We have issued nearly 1,25,000 student visas." According to a report by ANI, he was responding to a query over the slowdown in clearing the visas backlog for Indian tourists. "We of course recognise that some applicants may still face extended visa wait times and we are making every effort to reduce visa interview appointment wait times as quickly as possible," he added.
Price said that the US is committed to safeguarding national security while facilitating legitimate travel to non-immigrant travellers. He also said that timely visa processing is important to the US economy and the administration's goal. Highlighting US' efforts in processing visas quickly, Price said, "We have doubled the hiring of US foreign and service personnel to do this important work. Visas processing is recovering faster than projected and over the coming years we expect to reach pre-pandemic processing levels."
Earlier, a Senior US Embassy official exuded confidence in India, in November 2022, and said that New Delhi is expected to surpass China in getting the highest number of visas by 2023 and will be ranked two in the issuance of visas after Mexico. "We expect that India will surpass China in getting the number of US visas by next year's summer. After Mexico, India is expected to rank number 2 in the issuance of US Visas," a Senior US Embassy official said in New Delhi, according to a report by ANI. The senior US Embassy Official in New Delhi announced that they are opening slots in mid-November.
"For various kinds of visas, we would not have much wait time. Each separate category has some wait time," a senior US Embassy official added. The US has opened up 1,00,000 slots for applicants for H and L worker visas. This has already happened which will cut down the wait times. "India is a number one priority for Washington right now. We have big categories in students, high-tech workers, tourists and business," the official added.