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Inordinate delay hits spouses of H1B visa holders

Inordinate delay hits spouses of  H1B visa holders
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Inordinate delay hits spouses of H1B visa holders

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There has been inordinate delay in issuing of H4 work authorisation permits to certain categories of spouses of those possessing H1B foreign work visas, the most sought after among Indian IT professionals, a group of highly talented Indian women in the US has said.

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Washington: There has been inordinate delay in issuing of H4 work authorisation permits to certain categories of spouses of those possessing H1B foreign work visas, the most sought after among Indian IT professionals, a group of highly talented Indian women in the US has said.

An H4 visa is issued by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to immediate family members (spouse and children under 21 years of age) of the H1B visa holders, most of whom are Indian IT professionals.

The H1B visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows US companies to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise. The technology companies depend on it to hire tens of thousands of employees each year from countries like India and China.

The H4 visa is normally issued to those who have already started the process of seeking employment-based lawful permanent resident status in the US.

A group of such Indian women over the weekend organised a protest march in San Jose, California on the occasion of International Women's Day to highlight the suffering of tens of thousands of immigrant women being forced out of their livelihoods, organisers of the event SaveH4EAD said.

Spouses of Indian professionals on H1B visas, mostly women, are the biggest beneficiary of the Obama-era rule that gave employment authorisation cards. "We are here to reiterate that this is our home, this is where we have spent the last many years of our lives, raised families and contributed positively to the society and economy as skilled legal immigrants," said Pratima Joglekar, California chapter lead volunteer and organiser of the event.

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