A group of lawmakers have for the first time introduced a legislation in both the chambers of the US Congress proposing major reforms in the H-1B work visas by giving priority to the best and brightest US-educated foreign youths, a move that could benefit Indian students already in the country.
The new system would ensure that the best and brightest students being educated in the US receive preference for an H-1B visa, including advanced degree holders, those being paid a high wage, and those with valuable skills, proponents of this major legislative reforms said on Friday.
The H-1B visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows US companies to employ foreign workers in speciality occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise. Companies depend on it to hire tens of thousands of employees each year from countries like India and China.
On April 1, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) said that the US received nearly 275,000 unique registration requests for the Congressional mandated 85,000 H-1B visas for foreign technology professionals, of which more than 67 per cent are from India.
As far as the students are concerned, India accounts for the second largest number of foreign students in the US after China. There are more than 200,000 Indian students in the US.
However, there are debates wherein it is also believed that the legislation could hit the IT companies in India who have been sending their employees to America, according to the sources.