Changed travel guidelines creates issues for many Indians trying to get back home from US

indica News Bureau

Many Indians in the US who have H-1B work visas or holding Green Cards with children who are American by birth are being prevented from boarding the special repatriation flights run by Air India.

As per the new regulations issued by the government of India, visas of foreign nationals and OCI card holders have been suspended as per the new travel guidelines issued by the government of India.

A few people are really in great confusion and trouble. For example a couple in New Jersey who lost their H-1B job which meant that they have to return to Indian within 60 days as per US visa laws. Again the couple has kids born in America and they are American citizens. So this couple and many others are in a sort of no-zone. As per the latest guidelines issued by the Indian government, these people are finding themselves in no-fly list on these special Air India repatriation flights.

One of the sufferers of the new regulations said: “I would like to urge the Indian government to reconsider their decision on the humanitarian basis.” 

Now these people have the option to plead to the Indian government or to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to extend their stay. Such H-1B visa holders had launched a White House petition urging President Trump to extend the permissible stay from 60 days to 180 days. The White House is yet to respond to this request by these H-1B visa holders. 

To compound the problem, a huge number of H-1B visa holders have lost their jobs and these Indians have no option but to fly back home. 

It is to be noted that the US is experiencing a big job loss scenario because of the ongoing coronavirus crisis. It is estimated that 33 million Americans have lost their jobs. 

It is to be noted that the Indian government has launched the “Vande Bharat Mission” to repatriate Indian citizens caught amid the coronavirus crisis in other countries.  

Many have expressed their disappointment in a letter to the Union Home Secretary, Ajay Kumar Bhalla: “We would like to express our disappointment with the discrimination between OCIs and citizens in respect of entering India at this critical stage when many OCIs have lawfully built their homes, families and businesses in India.”

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