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Indian doctors in UK get a breather

Suspension of the law brings relief to 16,000 non-EU doctors, 13,000 of whom are Indians, reports Vijay Dutt.

india Updated: Feb 26, 2007 03:29 IST

Britain has decided to not apply its new immigration law for the moment granting a temporary reprieve to Indian doctors in the country.

The 16,000 doctors from the non-EU countries — of which almost 13,000 are Indians — were facing the prospect of having to leave Britain.

But the department of health, under pressure from the BAPIO (British Association of Physicians of Indian Origin), has agreed to keep the new imigration rules in abeyance for the first round of recruitment of training posts in the National Health Service (NHS) this year.

The immigration laws were amended in April 2006 under which employers have to prove that they had no appropriate candidates from the UK and EU before offering jobs to non-EU candidates. Welcoming the decision on Sunday, Dr Ramesh Mehta, president of the BAPIO, told the Hindustan Times that all 16,000 doctors would be eligible for consideration as trainees in the first round of recruitment this year, according to the health department’s latest guidelines posted on its website.

Short-listing of candidates will be announced on Monday and interviews will take place during the first week of March.

First Published: Feb 25, 2007 17:19 IST