UK tightens post-study work rules for Indians
Odd jobs are not going to be an option for Indian graduate students once they finish their studies in UK.delhi Updated: Jun 12, 2012 01:06 IST
Odd jobs are not going to be an option for Indian graduate students once they finish their studies in UK.
UK has made it clear that under the changed visa rules — aimed at cutting immigration — after getting their graduate degrees Indian students can only work in jobs there that match their qualification and only if the employment offer is from a recognised employer.
This was conveyed to India at the annual Foreign Office Consultations held between foreign secretary Rajan Mathai and UK permanent under secretary Simon Fraser in New Delhi on June 1.
In simple terms, a graduate will not be allowed to work as a pump assistant-a job that doesn't require a degree-in the UK.Earlier many Indian students would take up small jobs under the post study work clause, which allowed them to extend their stay in the UK after completing their studies, official sources familiar with the discussions said.
But this doesn't mean that Indian students cannot work in UK at all, they added.
Indian officials said getting a chance to work in UK for sometime after the studies had been a "major attraction for Indian students" many of whom come from middle-class backgrounds.
Many, including top British universities, had expressed reservations that doing away with this visa category would deter overseas students.
But British officials explained that this change in visa rule under Tier 1 will in no way prevent Indian graduates from finding employment there. The rules under Tier 2 of the point-based system will allow all students who graduate from UK universities to apply for working visa provided they have "graduate level job offers".
"They can work for three years under this and can extend it for another 3 years," an official said.
The UK has also promised to look into the India's concerns over the issue of "mobility of Indian professionals in UK". India had taken up similar concerns with US secretary of state Hillary Clinton, who visited India last month. New Delhi has maintained that barriers on the free movement of professionals were against WTO norms.
In 2011, UK issued about 32,000 visas to Indian students and it was estimated that the non- European Union students bring in 9 billion pound annually to the British exchequer.