Indian Prime Minister’s visit to the UK is being overshadowed by the row over UK’s strict rules on the student visas, as the Indian government officials and business leaders pressurize the home secretary to relax them.
But the Indian business community in the UK and the people has warned that the UK’s immigration rules will continue to thwart closer relationships.
The number of students from India who enter Britain has been halved over the period of four years and that due to the Home Office had abolished the rule that permitted the non-EU students to stay in the UK for two years to find the job.
Now the pressure has been building on the Home Secretary, Theresa May for relaxing or overturning that provision completely and also excluding the students from her target of minimizing the net migration below 1,00,000 for a year.
Lord Bilimoria, has also warned that the Home Office was in the danger of undermining the efforts to toughen relationships. He also told that the students from India are largely important to the UK and yet we are having the provisions for immigration that are leading to Indian student numbers to remain half in the past five years.
Vijay Goel, Chairman, London Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s Asian Business Association, has also said that the students with high skills are going to New Zealand and Australia, instead of coming to the UK resulting in loss to the UK’s economy. Some bright and best students visiting the UK come from India to contribute to the economy, to the innovation and to science and technology sector of the country.
Senior officials have also intended to raise the question of student visa during the PM’s visit, along with many general visa issues like cost for the Indian business people to get the UK visas.
Theresa May has come under extreme pressure from many senior cabinet colleagues as they have argued that the students shall be excluded from the UK government’s target of net migration as many of them leave the nation after completing their studies.