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US Charge d'Affaires Ambassador Elizabeth Jones on Friday informed that the Joe Biden led-country is taking ‘tremendous effort’ to reduce the long wait time for issuance of visa to India, news agency PTI reported. 

Jones stated that the dire situation arose owing to higher demand. Jones also said that Washington considered it top priority to to cut the wait time for grant of visas, this also includes recruitment and training of visa counsellors.

Jones clarified that the the delay in issuing visa was a post covid-19 pandemic situation wherein the two year long lockdown created several backlogs from various parts of the globe. 

Jones said, “They are particularly bad in India because the demand for visas is so high. That's one of the big elements; it's one of the big differences". 

"Our mission in India is going to get quite a number of them... By the summer, we will be fully staffed here in Delhi and in our consulates to issue visas and do these interviews," she said.

The waiting period of first time B1/B2 visa applicants in India is close to three years.

"We know this has been very difficult. We have asked for your patience... I can guarantee you that this is a very serious issue that is on the top of the mind in Washington and there is a tremendous effort to solve the problem here in India," Jones added.

She also noted that the US issued 82,000 visas to Indian students this year.

"We are extremely pleased to have really done a juggernaut effort to issue 82,000 student visas," she said.

Jones also said that efforts are underway to "reduce and eliminate" the time for issuance of H1B visas.

Indians make up a large proportion of the recipients of H-1B and other work visas granted to skilled foreign workers, many in the tech industry.

The H-1B visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows US companies to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise. 

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