Hyderabad

A journey that was cut short!

Going by the latest count, 25 students who travelled by Air India to the US to join Silicon Valley and North Western Universities in California, reached Hyderabad. While 14 were deported last week, 11 reached the city on the night of December 21.

Meanwhile, sources in the emigration wing vouched for deportation of another 15 students who had flown by other airlines.

“The number of those deported could be close to 50,” an officer said on condition of anonymity. In case of other airlines, most US-bound students with admit cards to these universities are screened at Abu Dhabi airport from where they usually make a transit to the US. However, when The Hindu contacted them, officials of Emirates and Etihad airlines refused to comment.

All those who landed in Rajiv Gandhi International Airport on Monday night were held in federal prison in San Francisco for four days. They were questioned about their intentions of travel and stay in the country, students told media persons at RGIA.

Air India has already stopped transiting US-bound students with I-20s issued by the two universities under question as per the communication received from the US Customs and Border Protection Agency (CBPA).

The CBPA had informed AI that the two varsities were under scrutiny.

The two universities in question are, however, not nationally accredited. These are accredited by Accreditation Council for Independent Colleges and Schools, which is a State-level accrediting body in the US. Ironically, even as CBPA has warned AI of its “scrutiny”, the US Department of Homeland Security still lists the two institutes as those that have accreditation.

While Silicon Valley University has had accreditation of the Council since 2003, North Western Polytechnic has had accreditation since 1998 till date. As per the terms and references of accreditation, the universities can offer “certificates or diplomas…master’s degrees in programs designed to educate students for professional, technical or occupational careers, including those that offer those programs via distance education”.

The US Consulate in Hyderabad, in an explanation of DHS rules, stated, “Failure to comply with the regulations can result in determination that a school or a school system is no longer eligible for certification”.

Hyderabad-based US educational counselling agents, however, said several institutes still come under Federal and State law enforcement scanner. “Students have to be careful about the process,” a consultant from I-20 career counselling said.



The US Consulate in Hyderabad said that failure to comply with the regulations can result in the school not being eligible for certification




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Printable version | Oct 27, 2021 5:36:52 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/a-journey-that-was-cut-short/article8020135.ece

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