UK Polls: With Rishi Sunak on his way out, England-bound international students from India may have a reason to cheer

The Rishi Sunak-government had set up a migration advisory committee (MAC) to re-assess the continuation of graduate route work visa, also known as post-study work visa that grants work rights for two years to the graduates of British universities.

Vimal Chander Joshi
First Published5 Jul 2024, 07:19 PM IST
The Rishi Sunak-led Conservative government discontinued the grant of visa for the dependents of students with effect from Jan 2024. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja
The Rishi Sunak-led Conservative government discontinued the grant of visa for the dependents of students with effect from Jan 2024. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja(REUTERS)

As the voters of UK have shown the door to Rishi Sunak-led Conservative Party, and the Labour Party leader Keir Starmer takes over as the Prime Minister, international students from India may have a reason to cheer as the government that launched a spate of anti-immigrant policies bid adieu to Downing Street after a 14-year reign.

The Conservative Party headed by former Prime Minister Rishi Sunak rolled out a range of policies to clamp down on immigrants.

These include the phasing out of dependents’ visa for students, plan to send illegal immigrants on a flight to Rwanda, and discontinuation of visa for dependents of care workers.

These policies were launched in the Conservative party’s attempt to ‘stop the boats’, a clear reference to curb the practice of migrants entering UK in small boats without visa after crossing English Channel.

From October 2023 onwards, UK government had raised the visa fees by up to £127 for international students.

Few anti—immigrant policies rolled out by the Tories:

1. Review of post-study visa

The Indian-origin Prime Minister’s government had set up a migration advisory committee (MAC) to re-assess the continuation of graduate route work visa, also known as post-study work visa that grants work rights for two years to the graduates of British universities.

The review of committee was a highly-anticipated event and was profoundly criticised among international students and future students alike. The committee, in its review on May 14, recommended the continuation of the visa.

The visa introduced in July 2021 allows international students to work in any job without any sponsorship or work permit.

This allows the graduates of British universities to work in any job just like a normal British citizen without any restrictions. This visa’s validity is for two years.

According to a British Council report, India is the largest source of graduate route participants among students from all over the world, and witnessed 68 percent growth in 2023.

2. Dependents’ visa for students:

The British government discontinued the grant of visa for the dependents of students. From January 2024 onwards, overseas students barring research students, are not permitted to bring their family members along with them.

Consequently, number of dependents between January and March 2024 fell by almost 80 percent as compared to dependents during the same period in 2023, while over 26,000 fewer student visa applications were made.

Also Read | UK says drop in dependents accompanying overseas students after visa crackdown

3. Migrant care workers

From March 11, 2024 onwards, migrant care workers were also barred from bringing their partners and children to the country.

The new visa restrictions also stopped international students from switching out of the student route into work before completing their studies.

4. Rwanda plan

Under this plan, all illegal immigrants will be deported to Rwanda, which is a small country in Central Africa. Under an arrangement between the two countries, illegal immigrants will be deported for processing, asylum and resettlement.  

Sunak had announced in April that the first flights would take off in 10-12 weeks.  However, no flights took off to Rwanda before the elections, reported Reuters.

 

Also Read | Will UK election impact visa and immigration policies? Expert says THIS
Also Read | Travajar launches express Dubai visa service with 4 hours processing time
Also Read | Australia doubles student visa fees, likely to impact Indians
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First Published:5 Jul 2024, 07:19 PM IST
HomeNewsworldUK Polls: With Rishi Sunak on his way out, England-bound international students from India may have a reason to cheer

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