America Will Remain a Country of Immigrants: U.S. Ambassador to India

American Ambassador Kenneth Juster lauded Indian entrepreneurs for successfully bridging the gap between the cultures of the United States and India.


Allaying fears of a probable change in the visa regulations that could affect around 750,000 Indian H-1B visa holders and could even lead to them being deported, American Ambassador Kenneth Juster assured on Jan. 11 that the United States will continue to be a country of immigrants and that will not change.

There could, however, be some refinements during the ongoing process of the review of the visas and that included the H-1B visa category, Juster said in his inaugural speech during an event titled U.S.-India Relations: Building a Durable Partnership for the 21st Century.

The remarks by the American diplomat closely follow the Donald Trump administration’s statement on Jan. 8, that said it is not considering the proposal that would have caused a mass deportation of foreign workers by denying extensions to green card applicants whose applications were under process.

“Today, approximately 33 percent of all immigrant-founded startups in the United States have Indian founders, a number which far exceeds that of any other group. Surely, the human dimension of interactions between Indians and Americans has contributed to this incredible statistic,” Juster said.

The ambassador added that the United States is a country of immigrants, with 4 million Indian Americans and that has been one of the driving factors of the economy and helped in the country’s growth. “And that’s not going to change,” he said, the Hindustan Times reported.

Juster lauded Indian entrepreneurs for successfully bridging the gap between the cultures of the United States and India. He said that they have made a significant mark on the American technology landscape, while also benefiting India.

“As the US National Security Strategy recognizes, India is ‘a leading power’ in the Indo-Pacific region and beyond. For India and the United States, the Indo-Pacific is vital to the security and prosperity of our people as well as others,” Juster added. He also said that “America First” and “Make in India” are not incompatible, and that the two countries should invest in each other’s markets as it will be mutually beneficial. “It will increase our economic interactions and volume of trade, lead to collaboration on emerging technologies, and create jobs in both countries,” he said.

In December 2017, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was seeking to make obtaining an H-1B visa tougher. The DHS was mulling over bringing back the 2011 rule of pre-registration for employers planning to hire foreigners under the H-1B visa program.

The proposal to tweak the H-1B visa extension rule was criticized by some US lawmakers and advocacy groups. Democrat lawmaker Tulsi Gabbard slammed the proposed move and called the restrictions draconian, one that would tear families apart.

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