UK list to check bogus agents, universities

If the university or institute a student has got admission in is not shown in the list, the student will not get student visa.

British Deputy High Commissioner Richard Hyde spoke on the amendments made in the visa rules at a media interaction on Tuesday.

However, lesser recognised colleges and universities, which are still on the list and undergoing different phases of vetting, will be allowed to sponsor limited number of students.

Hyde promised that most changes would not affect those in India, given the UK consulate in India received the highest number of student visa applications globally.
"We are conscious of the enormous amount of abuse (bogus agents making money, academic institutions promising seats they don't have and fake institutes) of the system we saw last year," he said.

Personal visit

The other changes are introduction of biometric system, in which students will have to personally visit the High Commission office for giving fingerprint impressions as a security measure, Hyde said.

 He said the students' right to work had been changed. Only under graduate and post graduate students in government funded universities could take up work, with the new ratio being 66 per cent studies and 33 per cent work.

Also, only post graduation students, whose course extended more than a year, can have a dependent for one year's duration. The dependent could work, Hyde said.

Ultimately, his message to students was - no need to apply for visa through agents. "Our website has everything. Nobody, not even the agents, can get you the visa faster," Hyde said.

Work visa

To encourage more skilled workers, investors and entrepreneurs to come to UK, intra company transfers have been exempted from the introduction of ceiling on annual number of employment visa applications.

The reason for this was 90 per cent of skilled migrants came on intra company transfers. Under the new ceiling, only 20,700 employment visas globally will be granted.
Interestingly, Indians constituted half of the skilled migrants and 60 per cent of
intra company transfers in UK.

Hyde said they were also considering preparing a list of recognised or validated financial institutions, since many students gave letters from financial institutions that were bogus.

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