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USCIS sees H-1B applications cap reached in five days

H-1B is the most commonly used visa for workforce transfer for Indian IT professionals going to the US. It has been under scrutiny since Trump assumed charge.

, ET Bureau|
Last Updated: Apr 07, 2017, 11.36 PM IST
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H-1B is the most commonly used visa for workforce transfer for Indian IT professionals to the US.
H-1B is the most commonly used visa for workforce transfer for Indian IT professionals to the US.
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NEW DELHI: The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the agency that handles Lawful immigration to the US, has reached the mandated 65,000 H-1B visa application cap for fiscal year 2018.

USCIS has also received a "sufficient number" of H-1B visa petitions to meet the 20,000 US advanced degree exemption, it said in a statement.

The application process opened on Monday.

H-1B is the most commonly used visa for workforce transfer for Indian IT professionals to the US. The visa programme has been under intense discussion and scrutiny since the Donald Trump administration in the US took over, with critics arguing that it is being misused to send IT professionals to the US.

President Trump had promised to bring about changes to the H-1B visa system during his presidential campaign, and vowed to bring back American jobs for US citizens.

"USCIS will continue to accept and process petitions that are otherwise exempt from the cap, " USCIS said in a statement

Petitions filed on behalf of current H-1B workers who have been counted previously against the cap, and who still retain their cap number, will also not be counted toward the congressionally mandated FY 2018 H-1B cap, it added.

H-1B visas are allotted to highly skilled workers who travel to the US to work at the client location, and the IT industry has been a big beneficiary of the programme. Not just Indian IT companies, but even global firms outsource work and bring in Indian programmers on H-1B visas.

The Indian IT industry has long been accused of misusing the visa process, but has consistently denied any malpractices.

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