Indian techies felt a surge of relief as US authorities on Tuesday said that the Trump government is not considering proposals that would force current H-1B visa holders to leave the country. The announcement was made by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Previously, reports circulated that the Trump administration was considering tightening H-1B visa rules resulting in deportation of 750,000 Indians. It was also reported that the government was considering to end extensions for H-1B holders.
The USCIS "is not considering a regulatory change that would force H-1B visa holders to leave the United States by changing interpretation of section certain language in Section 104 C of the American Competitiveness in the 21st Century Act (AC21) statute that states that USCIS may grant the extensions," said an official.
Jonathan Withington, Chief of Media Relations at the USCIS, said in a statement that even if the government did want to change regulations, H-1B visa holders will not have to leave the USA because “employers could request extensions in one-year increments under section 106(a)-(b) of AC21 instead.”
The statement arrived following last week’s news reports by a US-based news agency stating that America was planning to introduce new regulations that prevents the extension of H-1B visas. The H-1B visa is the most sought after by Indian IT professionals.
The move was reportedly opposed by several lawmakers and the industry. During the election campaign of Donald Trump, the then Presidential candidate had promised to increase oversight of the H-1B and L-1 visa programmes to prevent its abuse.