US says new initiatives launched to speed up the Visa application from India

US launches several new initiatives & schemes to reduce delays in visa processing in India

US launches several new initiatives & schemes to reduce delays in visa processing in India
US launches several new initiatives & schemes to reduce delays in visa processing in India

US consulates to increase strength; launches new initiatives to cut the visa wait time

In an effort to cut delays in granting visas to Indians, the United States has launched new initiatives, including scheduling special interviews for first-time applicants and increasing the strength of Embassy and Consular staff. As part of the multi-pronged approach to cut the visa backlog, the US Embassy in Delhi and the consulates in Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, and Hyderabad conducted “special Saturday interview days” on January 21. Recent reports suggested that US Visas from India are delayed more than 800 days.

“On January 21, the US mission in India launched the first in a series of special Saturday interview days, as part of a larger effort to reduce wait times for first-time visa applicants,” the US embassy said. “The United States Embassy in New Delhi and Consulates in Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, and Hyderabad all opened consular operations on Saturday to accommodate applicants who require in-person visa interviews,” it said in a statement.

The US Embassy and Consulates in India will continue to open “additional slots” for appointments to take place on select Saturdays in the coming months. “These additional interview days are just one component of a multi-pronged initiative to address the backlog in visa processing caused by COVID-19,” it said. The statement said the US State Department has implemented remote processing of interview waiver cases for applicants with previous US visas.

Between January and March 2023, dozens of temporary consular officers from Washington and other embassies will arrive in India to increase visa processing capacity, it said. The US mission in India released more than 2,50,000 additional B1/B2 appointments. While B1 is a business visa, B-2 is a tourism visa. The mission said the Consulate General in Mumbai also extended its weekday operating hours to make space for additional appointments.

“By this summer, the US mission in India will be at full staffing, and we expect to be processing visas at levels from prior to the COVID-19 pandemic,” the Embassy said. The statement said as travel restrictions have been lifted, the mission to India has made it a priority to facilitate legitimate travel and adjudicated over 8,00,000 non-immigrant visas in 2022, including record numbers of both student and employment visas.

“In every other visa category, interview wait times in India are at pre-pandemic levels or lower,” it said. Consulate General Mumbai currently adjudicates the most visa applications in India and is one of the largest visa operations in the world, the embassy said.

“Our consular teams across India are putting in the extra hours to meet the needs of international travellers and bring down wait times,” said Mumbai Consular Chief John Ballard. “This is part of a Mission wide effort to find innovative solutions to facilitate travel to the United States,” the official said.

PGurus is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel and stay updated with all the latest news and views

For all the latest updates, download PGurus App.

We are a team of focused individuals with expertise in at least one of the following fields viz. Journalism, Technology, Economics, Politics, Sports & Business. We are factual, accurate and unbiased.
Team PGurus



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here