2-Year Multiple Entry UK Visa for Indians Depends on Pilot Program for China
Britain will consider two-year multiple entry visa for Indians after analyzing a similar program for China, Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh said.
The British government will consider two-year multiple entry visas for Indians after analyzing the results of a similar program that is being tested out for China, Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh said in the Parliament earlier this week. The matter has been raised with the UK government on multiple levels.
Singh was responding to a question by KVP Ramachandra Rao, a Member of Parliament of Congress party from Telangana, in Rajya Sabha on Dec. 20.
The matter was taken up by Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju during the recent visit of UK Minister of State for Immigration Brandon Lewis to India on Nov. 6, as well as during the India-UK Home Affairs Dialogue held in London in July 2017. “The UK authorities have taken note,” he said.
Meanwhile, Virendra Sharma, a British MP of Indian origin, asked Lewis after his return from India in November, “We are now coming to the end of a very successful two-year pilot allowing Chinese nationals a two-year, multiple-entry visa for the price of a six-month single-entry visa. It looks as though that will be made permanent in the new year. Will the Secretary of State commit to introducing the same scheme for Indian nationals, our best allies in trade post-Brexit?”
Lewis had told Sharma during a debate at House of Commons that the two-year multiple entry visa will be considered on a case by case basis after reviewing the similar pilot project for China.
“I was in India just a couple of weeks ago, and I had some conversations about the pilots we are running in China. The hon. Gentleman is a little premature, because the pilot with China is still running. It is based on a different situation from the situation with us and India, but we will look at that pilot, and I will feed back after it has ended and we have a chance to review it,” Lewis said on Nov. 20.
British Prime Minister Theresa May, who also visited India in 2017, and who is focused on reducing net immigration in the nation and includes students in the statistics, told New Delhi that its visa offer to India would change only if the return of the Indians who don’t have the “right” to stay can be expedited.