New Delhi: Over 55,000 Indian students and exchange visitors are travelling to study in the US this year and it is “an all-time record”, the US embassy here said on Monday. It said more visa applications were approved in the current year than ever before notwithstanding the coronavirus pandemic.
“The US mission in India is pleased to announce that its embassy and consulates approved more student visa applicants in 2021 than ever before, despite the global Covid-19 pandemic,” the embassy said.
“Through these efforts, more than 55,000 students and exchange visitors are boarding planes to study in the US, and more students are being approved every day,” it said in a statement. In a tweet, the embassy described it as an all-time record.
“Huge congratulations to our hardworking consular teams across the U.S. Mission in India. This year, more than 55K students are boarding planes to study in the United States, an all-time record in India. Wishing all students a successful academic year!” it said.
Ambassador Atul Keshap, the Charge d’Affaires at the US embassy, lauded the staff involved in the issuance of visas and said Indian students enrich US society, achieve high levels of academic success, and deepen the bonds of friendship between the two countries.
“Studying in the US is a unique and often life-changing experience for Indian students, granting fresh, global perspectives and frequently leading to invaluable career opportunities,” he said.
“Indian students also enrich US society, achieve high levels of academic success, and deepen the bonds of friendship between our countries. The many hard-working women and men of the US Mission to India are proud to facilitate their travel and study,” Keshap added.
The embassy said the US missions typically begin interviewing fall semester students for a given year in May, but the second wave of Covid-19 forced a delay in the commencement of the student visa season by two months.
“In July, as soon as conditions allowed for the resumption of visa services without endangering applicants’ health and safety, consular teams worked not only to match, but surpass, their pre-Covid workload,” it said.
It said the US embassy and consulates opened additional hours for visa appointments and made every possible effort to ensure timely arrival for academic programs for as many students as possible.
“Ultimately, these efforts paid off, as more students than ever before received visas to study in the US,” the embassy said.