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Indians appeal against UK immigration laws

The British Association of Physicians of Indian Origin appeals against a verdict over permit-free training for Indians.
By HS Rao (PTI), London
PUBLISHED ON MAR 02, 2007 09:45 PM IST

An organisation representing Indian doctors in the UK has appealed against a High Court judgement which would abolish permit-free training for overseas medicos, affecting thousands of Indian doctors and medical students.

Ramesh Mehta, President of the British Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (BAPIO) told PTI that the group filed the appeal on Thursday in the Appeals Court.

The February 9 High Court judgment refused to quash an immigration law that stipulates doctors from outside the EU need a work permit to train in Britain.

Though Indian doctors were treated equally with UK and EU applicants during the latest round of recruitment by the National Health Service (NHS), "we will continue to fight for the rights of the 'International Medical Graduates'," Mehta said.

The health department had decided to keep the new immigration laws in abeyance for the first round of recruitment this year in the NHS.

About 30,000 junior doctors had applied through a new online system for a post that will allow them to train to become a specialist -- only 22,000 seats are available.

Interviews for short-listed candidates will be held on Monday.

Mehta said many Indian doctors are planning to emigrate if they did not get jobs. "There is big demand for Indian doctors from Canada and Australia who have already approached us. We would welcome our doctors to go. But the doctors need to complete their training here," he said.

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