28 January, 2021

Yet Another Check-In Plan

The ‘I-squared’ Bill is the latest in a series of ­proposals to restrict the scope of the H1B visa

Inside Out
Indian professionals protest in front of the White House
Photograph by PTI
Yet Another Check-In Plan

Continuing the campaign aga­inst the H1B visa scheme in the US, a fresh bill has surfaced in the US parliament which has the potential of both benefiting and harming Indian IT companies, one of the largest beneficiaries of the H1B visa scheme for sending skilled workers to the US.

The new Bill—Immigration Inno­va­t­ion­ (I-squared) Act of 2018—was ­proposed by Republican Senators Orrin Hatch and Jeff Flake recently and has the backing of several Silicon Valley bigwigs including Microsoft and Facebook.

What should be sweet music to Indian IT companies in all this is that this bill does not seek cutting legal immigration but actually proposes to increase it. The bill proposes to increase the number of H1B visas issued by the US government from the present 65,000 a year to 85,000 a year. This bill comes at a time when there is heightened demand and activity in the US to curtail immigration and put tighter curbs on the H1B visa scheme.

Only recently, there was a proposal to not extend the H-1B visa of those waiting for...



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