WASHINGTON: In a move that will benefit a significantly large number of Indian technology professionals, the US is set to begin a pilot programme for domestic renewal of certain categories of H-1B visas in December. The pilot, which will be limited to 20,000 participants initially, comes months after the White House announced the plan during a visit of PM Modi.
Julie Stufft, deputy assistant secretary of state for


services, said, “In India, the demand (for US visas) is still very high.

The wait time of six, eight and 12 months is not what we need and not indicative of how we view India. We want to make sure Indian travellers can get appointments as quickly as possible. One way we are doing that is through the domestic visa renewal programme, which is focused very much on India.”
Over three months, the department will issue 20,000 visas to foreign nationals who are already in the country. “The vast majority of those will be Indian nationals in the US and we will expand as it goes on,” Stufft said, She said it will prevent people from having to travel back to India to get their visa renewed.
The domestic visa renewal programme is only for work visas, Stufft underlined.

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