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Will Changes In The H-1B Visa Rule Hit The Indian IT Sector Severely

Will Changes In The H-1B Visa Rule Hit The Indian IT Sector Severely


The Indian IT sector has been grappling with critical issues pertaining to H-1B visa right after the rise of protectionism by the US government. This changing regulation has greatly affected Indian employees and leading IT organisations in India and the US as well. Not only that, but the recent regulations are also affecting Indian students who graduated from US universities and are seeking employment in the US.

The Impact

The new rule for the H-1B visa will be effective from 1st April will change the selection process of the registrations that are applied to the 65,000 visa cap. So far, the Indian IT sector was one of the biggest beneficiaries of  H-1B visas.

REGISTER>>

Last year, an electronic registration requirement for the visa petitioners has been introduced by the US government which can affect Indian companies. According to this report, a study by the National Foundation for American Policy, a US think tank said that Amazon, Microsoft, Intel, and Google were among the top 10 employers who got H-1B visa for their employees and eventually the new rule will make it harder for the Indian IT sectors to compete with these tech giants in sending their employee to the US. However, students studying in the US are going to win over the employees by the amendment of this new rule.

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services said, “The new registration system, once implemented, will lower overall costs for employers and increase government efficiency. We are also furthering President Trump’s goal of improving our immigration system by making a simple adjustment to the H-1B cap selection process.”

“It is a challenge for clients of Indian IT services companies,” in a report said Shivendra Singh, vice-president and head of Global Trade Development at IT services industry body Nasscom. “It is not simple to take a call whether an IIT graduate with so many years of experience is not fit for a role and another person who holds a Ph.D. from a US institution is the right fit.”

He added, “At the end of the day, you are talking about the best and brightest talent and H-1B is supposed to bridge the skill gaps for critical roles and the US has an absolute short supply of talent, such as of data scientists.”

It is noted that the drop in H-1B visas for the Indian IT sectors is mainly due to the industry trends towards digital services such as data science, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, etc. which requires fewer workers. This report shows that the top seven Indian IT firms saw a drastic drop in visas.

According to this report, USCIS spokesman Michael Bars said that by inverting the order, the new process could increase the number of H-1B holders who have advanced degrees by up to 16 percent — ensuring that “more of the best and brightest workers from around the world come to America” under the programme.

Future Impact

In this report, the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said that from this year, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) plans to remove from its regulations certain H-4 spouses of H-1B non-immigrants as a class of aliens eligible for employment authorisation which will have an impact on more than 90,000 H-4 visa holders.

The DHS further said that it will propose to revise the definition of specialty occupation to increase focus on obtaining the best and the brightest foreign nationals via the H-1B programme and will also revise the definition of employment and employer-employee relationship to better protect US workers and wages.

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