In an attempt to reduce concerns among students and business persons regarding the strict UK visa regime, officials from the United Kingdom Home Office say the reason for the decrease in the student immigration from India to the UK has nothing to do with the strict visa rules of the country.
Jeremy Oppenheim, the director for Growth and Engagement in the Home Office says that there are concerns about the cost of the visa application and the fact there isn’t a visa processing centre in Hyderabad. However due to the good performance of the visa centre in Chennai, but to ensure British Visas applications from Hyderabad are dealt with ease they have an application centre present there.
According to Oppenheim, even though there were apprehensions about the processing time, he stated that a maximum of 15 days were taken to process the applications. Acknowledging the common perception of the UK visa process being coupled with complexities, Oppenheim mentioned that visas were granted to 91 per cent of the applicants in India.
Discussing the issue of Post Study work Visa, Mr Oppenheim stated that if students found a job they were welcomed to stay. He also emphasised on the fact that UKBA had issued 402,000 UK Employment visas in the last 12 months, as well as increasing numbers of UK Business Visas. Responding to the fact that there had been a decline in the number of Indian students going to the United Kingdom and a rise in those going to US and Australia, Oppenheim said it was not due to the visa regime but was related to the kind of universities.
He however asserts that if one has come to study in Britain they should just study. If they want to continue to work in the UK after their education they should find a job while they are still studying and not after.