US aiming to process 1mn visas to Indians by year end
The US Mission has processed more than two lakh visas to India so far, and is aiming to process one million visas by 2023-end.
This year, the US Embassy ratchet up the visa process by opening the office during weekends. Besides, the Embassy has also added more staff, expanded the scope of drop-box facilities, and opened up interview slots over the weekend.
The US Mission, which has offices in Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, and Delhi, increased the strength of consular staff in January this year. The US Department of State has implemented remote processing of interview waiver cases for applicants with previous US visas. Dozens of temporary consular officers from Washington and other embassies have arrived in India to increase the processing capacity in January-March.
According to a report by the Indian Express, a spokesperson from the Embassy said, “The US Mission has already processed more than two lakh applications at our Embassy and Consulates in India, and we are on track to hit our goal of processing more than a million non-immigrant visa application in 2023″.
The US has aimed to process one million visa applications which include non-immigrant visas of all categories.
Last year, around nine million non-immigrant visa applications were processed worldwide. The non-immigrant visa categories include those for business, travel, student visas and crew visas.
Last month, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Visa Services in the Bureau of Consular Affairs Julie Stufft said, India is the US’s number one priority. The official said there has been a rise of around 36% in visa processing across the country.
Stufft also announced that come fall, the US will start the Visa stamping program domestically within the US for visa renewals, including H-1 and L-1 visa.
On January 21, the US Mission in India launched the first in a series of special Saturday interview days to reduce wait times for first-time visa applicants. (Source: The Indian Express)