Washington, October 7
The Trump administration has announced new restrictions on H-1B non-immigrant visa programme which it said aimed at protecting American workers, restoring integrity and to better guarantee that H-1B petitions are approved only for qualified beneficiaries and petitioners, a move which will affect thousands of Indian IT professionals.
The interim final rule announced by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on Tuesday, ahead of the US presidential election on November 3, will narrow the definition of “specialty occupation” as Congress intended by closing the overbroad definition that allowed companies to game the system.
It will also require companies to make “real” offers to “real employees,” by closing loopholes and preventing the displacement of the American workers. And finally, the new rules would enhance the department’s ability to enforce compliance through work site inspections and monitor compliance before, during and after an H1-B petition is approved.
The H-1B visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows US companies to employ foreign workers in speciality occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise. Such a decision by the Trump administration will have an adverse impact on thousands of Indian IT professionals. Already a large number of Indians on the H-1B visas have lost their jobs and are headed back home during the Covid pandemic that has severely hit the US economy.
The White House defended the move, saying the President is improving America’s work visa programmes. — PTI