International

U.S.-bound students worried by recent order

Representational image.

Representational image.   | Photo Credit: H. Vibhu

The recent order by the U.S. Immigration and Custom Enforcement (ICE) and homeland security that foreign students studying in universities where online classes are being held due to the COVID-19 pandemic will not be allowed to stay in the country has caused a lot of uncertainty in the large Indian student community in the U.S.

Speaking to The Hindu, former Lok Sabha MP from Nizamabad and immigration lawyer heading the New York-based law firm Sharma Yaskhi and Associates LLP, Madhu Goud Yaskhi, said that while Indian students already studying in universities in the United States were affected, the situation for those who had received offers from U.S.-based universities but were yet to start their academic year in the fall term was worse.

“Anxiety levels are high and students are very worried. We have received calls from anxious students and parents on the status of new admissions, etc. We have also been in touch with a student body here, called Meri Zimmedari, who tell us that universities are seeking feedback via town halls with students, etc., on what to do next. Not all can avail medical leave or hybrid courses. These are not viable options,” he said.

Challenging order

Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have already decided to legally challenge the order, but Mr. Yaskhi says many others are still studying the import of the order. “Universities are calling up students but nothing is clear as of now. During the spring semester, universities had allowed foreign students to stay on campus despite classes not being held. This order has made that accommodation difficult for the upcoming fall semester,” he said.

India sent over 200,000 students in 2018-19, the second largest number of students from any country, to the United States.

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Printable version | Aug 10, 2020 12:58:04 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/us-bound-students-worried-by-recent-order/article32046311.ece

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