Indian origin MP slams Britain's proposed immigration curbs

British parliament's powerful Home Affairs Select Committee Chairman Keith Vaz said the immigration cap should pass the scrutiny of parliament before it is brought into force.
To this end, the select committee headed by Vaz is beginning its consultations on the cap from Tuesday, he said.

He told IANS Saturday, two days before an interim cap on non-EU immigration is to come in force: "The cap will place restrictions on friendly countries like India. What happens if India reciprocates by placing a cap on British companies entering India?"

It is still not clear whether Cameron is taking his home secretary along during his visit to India. However, Vaz said that the cap issue is bound to become "an important bilateral issue" during Cameron's visit.

The interim cap from July 19 precedes a permanent cap from 2011. Home Secretary Theresa May has launched a 12-week consultation process on the format of the cap.
Vaz said the government had in the past lost its case related to non-EU immigration thrice in courts. "It is likely to happen again unless parliament's views are taken into account this time," he said.


The select committee chairman wants every party concerned with the immigration cap to come forward with its opinions and evidence.
Considering the fact that a substantial number of people affected by the cap would be Indians, he said: "Indian companies and investors should particularly come forward with their views."

The validity of the select committee's consultations, beginning Tuesday, may come into question because they will end much after the government's own consultations.
However, it is understood that the home secretary has been made aware of this and the government would consider the outcome of the select committee's consultations.

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