According to the latest data released by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), 395,025 foreign citizens were in line to receive green cards under the employment-based priority category. Till May 2018, of these 306,601 were Indians. China is second on the list. Now, 67,031 Chinese citizens are waiting for the green card. However, the number of people waiting for the green card of any other country is not more than 10,000. Other countries are El Salvador (7252), Guatemala (6,027), Honduras (5,402), Philippine (1,411), Mexico (700) and Vietnam (521).
The status of a valid permanent residence in America is called the ‘Green Card.’ The green card serves as proof that its holder, a Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR), including permission to reside and take employment in the United States.
What America’s current policy
Under the existing law, not more than 7 percent of citizens of any country will be given a green card in a fiscal year. Therefore, Indians have to wait for a long time to become a permanent resident of America. The worst impact of 7 percent quota in permanent residence is showering on Indian Americans. Most of these Indians mainly come to the US on H-1B work visas. Due to the quota, the waiting period of the green card for India’s migrants can be up to 70 years.
American Indians had campaigned to raise awareness of pending cases of a large number of green cards. The community said that 3 lakh Indian applicants equipped with high skill are getting affected. In a statement issued by GC Reforms Dot ORG, one of the founding members of the organization, Kiran Kumar Thota, said, “there is a need to overcome the delay in receiving green cards because it slows down the process of US innovation and employment generation”. Rishi Bhootra, director of the Hindu American Foundation, said, “Many skilled people remain in constant tension to maintain their same role of employment.”
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Effects of Green Card Bill on Indians
In 2015, the US gave a green card to 63 Indians. Along with this, the Indians working in the US are paying 30 percent tax and contributing the US economy. In the US, more than three-fourths of Indians are waiting in queue to obtain Legal Permanent Residence status. Indo-Americans, most of which are highly skilled and mainly come to the United States on H-1B work visas, are the worst victims of the current immigration system. Under the Green Card Policy of America, Indians can return to the country. Where the Indians had to wait for 10 to 35 years for the green card, the period has now increased to 70 years. In previous, America gave entry to nearly 10 lakh Indians in their country, it has now reduced to 5 lakhs.
How long will the Indians have to depend on foreign countries for employment?
On the one hand, where America has limited the entry of Indians in the US under the Green Card Act whereas, on the other hand, America is also trying to strengthen its relationship with India. Well, this is different, the important issue is how long the Indians will have to depend on foreign countries for their future?
For centuries we have been seeing India as an agricultural and developing country, which is still far behind than other European countries in terms of science and technology. It is said in our country that India is now touching new progress of science and technology but if we look the realities, even IITians have to depend on the other developed countries like the US, Russia, and Japan, etc. However, due to such laws implemented in the US, it has had an adverse effect not only in Indian but other countries but in spite of this, what government has arranged for those who are still waiting for the green card? Because this issue is not a problem only for the foreign citizens, but also the responsibility of the United States, because it is a kind of a mess of crores of civic people by creating this kind of policy without any arrangement and it’s also hurt the human rights of the foreign citizens.