U.K. Border Agency says they will be given time till December 1 to find places in other universities

There was some relief for foreign students, including 300 from India, affected by the British government’s teaching ban on the London Metropolitan University as the U.K. Border Agency said they would be given more time — at least until December 1 — to find places in other universities.

The current deadline is October 1.

On Thursday, the Home Office said that those who were not able to find admission in other universities within 60 days would be deported if they did not return home voluntarily. This led to panic among students who demanded more time to explore options.

On Friday, the Agency said the 60-day deadline would start after October 1.

“You do not need to do anything immediately. We will write to you after 1 October. We will ensure that you have 60 days to make a new student application or to arrange to leave the U.K. This 60 days will start from the date we write to you,” it said in a guidance to students.

But the university said it had no such information.

“We have not been told anything,” an official told The Hindu.

The university’s licence to recruit and teach foreign students from outside the European Union was revoked on Thursday for allegedly harbouring illegal immigrants in the guise of students.

‘Deficient sponsor’

Immigration Minister Damian Green said it had proved to be a “very, very deficient” sponsor. Many of its students did not have permission to stay in the country, and a “significant proportion” did not have a good standard of English. There was no proof that many were turning up for lectures, he claimed.

Some 2,500 students, mostly from India, Africa and the Caribbean, have been affected.

The vice-chancellor Malcolm Gillies rejected the allegations and said the university planned to mount a legal action.

Helpline

The government has set up a task force to help the affected students. But many said that a university helpline was simply giving them a list and telephone numbers of other universities where they could try their luck.