Diplomatic Spat Leads To Sharp Drop In Indian Students Seeking Study Visas In Canada

Diplomatic Spat Leads To Sharp Drop In Indian Students Seeking Study Visas In Canada

With over 41%, or 225,835 of all permits, awarded to Indians in 2022, they constituted the largest group of foreign students in Canada.

Siksha MUpdated: Wednesday, January 17, 2024, 01:37 PM IST
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National flags of India and Canada | File Pic

After a diplomatic spat between India and Canada on the killing of a Khalistani terrorist, the number of Indian students requesting study visas in Canada has significantly dropped, as per Reuters. With over 41%, or 225,835 of all permits, awarded to Indians in 2022, they constituted the largest group of foreign students in Canada. However, Immigration Minister Marc Miller thinks it is doubtful that the number of study visas for Indian students will increase anytime soon, given the recent events.

Official data indicates that in the fourth quarter of 2023, the number of study permits granted to Indians decreased by 86%. Study permits were granted to about 14,910 students in late 2023—a significant decrease from the 108,940 students who received them in the previous month.

Miller told Reuters, "our capacity to handle numerous applications from India has been significantly reduced by our association with the country, effectively halving the processing rate."

Miller continued, "I can't tell you about how the diplomatic relationship will evolve, particularly if police were to lay charges," implying that there might not be any resolution anytime soon.

Concerns over a "lack of residential and adequate teaching facilities" at some Canadian colleges have led some Indian students to consider options other than Canada, according to C Gurus Ubramanian, Counselor for the High Commission of India in Ottawa, the news agency reported.

On orders from New Delhi, Canada withdrew 41 diplomats, or two-thirds of its staff, from India in October. According to a minister's spokesperson, this circumstance may have also instigated Indian students to search for alternatives other than Canada in order to finish their education.

(With inputs from Reuters)

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