A number of Indians within the US, both on the H-1B work visa or Inexperienced Card having youngsters who’re Americans by start, are being prevented from travelling to India aboard the particular repatriation flights being run by Air India amidst the coronavirus-linked world journey restrictions.
In keeping with the rules issued by the Indian authorities final month and up to date final week, visas of international nationals and OCI playing cards, that present visa-free journey privileges to the individuals of Indian-origin, have been suspended as a part of the brand new worldwide journey restrictions.
For among the Indian residents just like the Pandey couple in New Jersey (identify and place modified at request), it is a double whammy. Having misplaced their H-1B job, they’ve to return to India inside the stipulated 60 days as required by regulation. The couple has two youngsters aged one and 6 years who’re Americans.
Within the early hours of Monday, they needed to return from Newark airport as Air India refused to present their youngsters a ticket to fly to India together with them, regardless of them having a legitimate Indian visa. The younger mom and father are Indian residents.
They stated that the officers from Air India and (Indian) Consulate (in New York) have been very cooperative.
However they might not do something as their palms have been tied by the newest regulation issued by the Indian authorities, a shocked Ratna Pandey informed PTI.
“I want to urge the Indian authorities to rethink their choice on the humanitarian foundation,” stated the Indian nationwide who has misplaced her job however couldn’t depart the US inside the stipulated 60 days to keep away from any future visa problems.
She now plans to make an enchantment to the US Citizenship and Immigration Providers (USCIS) to increase their keep.
Final month, H-1B visa holders, largely Indians, launched a White Home petition urging US President Donald Trump to increase their permissible keep from 60 to 180 days after job loss. Nevertheless, there was no choice from the White Home to date.
Whereas there is no such thing as a official statistics of what number of Indian H-1B visa holders have misplaced their jobs, it’s believed to be substantial.
The US, as a result of coronavirus pandemic, is experiencing an unprecedented unemployment fee and greater than 33 million Individuals have misplaced their jobs within the final two months. Given this large job loss, Indians, who’ve misplaced their jobs, are unlikely to get one and thus many would don’t have any different possibility however to journey again house.
Within the case of single mom Mamta (identify modified), the state of affairs is graver as her son is simply three-month-old. Solely she was given the ticket and the toddler was not allowed to fly alongside along with her as a result of he carried an American passport.
“I want to request the Indian authorities to allow us to fly again house. I do not need to keep within the US any longer,” she informed PTI hours after being prevented from boarding her hometown Ahmedabad-bound flight from Newark on Sunday.
“I’m alone right here. I haven’t got a relative right here. It”s a troublesome state of affairs,” she stated.
“Vande Bharat Mission is a humanitarian mission. However that is definitely inhuman,” stated Rakesh Gupta (identify modified) from Washington DC.
An H-1B skilled, Rakesh Gupta has misplaced his job and must return to India inside the stipulated 60 days. He and his spouse, Geeta (identify modified) being Indian residents, obtained the affirmation of their seats within the flight however have been informed that their two-and-a-half-year-old daughter can not journey with them as she carried an OCI card. “I do not imagine this,” he stated.
In contrast to the Pandey couple and Mamta, who had made the fee of USD 1,361 per ticket for his or her flight again house, Rakesh has not made the fee. Air India has stated that the cash could be refunded.
All three Indian residents requested the Indian authorities to assist them journey again house by making obligatory adjustments within the present rules.
As per a current authorities notification, all current Indian visa holders, and visa-free journey facility, granted to OCI cardholders who should not in India, have been suspended until restrictions on worldwide air journey stays.
New York-based group chief Prem Bhandari stated that the Could 5 journey advisory has created a number of painful points for the OCI cardholders within the US and in addition to Indian residents who’re both on Inexperienced Card or H-1B visas and need to journey again house, however can not depart their youngsters who’re Individuals by start.
“We want to specific our disappointment with the discrimination between OCIs and residents in respect of coming into India at this essential stage when many OCIs have lawfully constructed their houses, households and companies in India,” Bhandari stated in a letter to Union Residence Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla on Monday.