Hyderabad: The United States Consulate maintains that it will see a record number of Indian students this year. According to data seen by TOI, 14,694 student visas (F1 visas) were issued between January and May 14 this year across the five Indian consulates.
While the highest number of visas were issued in New Delhi (8,021), this figure was followed by Mumbai (2,589) and Hyderabad (1,947).
In 2019, in the same period between January and May, 5,663 student visas were issued.
The highest issuance then came from Mumbai (1,514), followed by New Delhi (1,465) and Chennai (1,290). The figures indicate an almost threefold increase in new student visas.
“Despite the disruptions linked to Covid-19, the American Embassy and consulates in India processed over 1.2 lakh student visa applications in 2021. There was no reduction in slots. In fact, we are expecting another record high student visa season, so we have opened thousands more visa appointments and expanded interview waiver programs for students,” said one US. Consulate spokesperson.
The consulate notes that the numbers will rise especially for Hyderabad.
“Despite these difficult circumstances (during the pandemic), the U.S. Consulate General in Hyderabad did not close for a single day. Over time, we will return to pre-pandemic staffing and plan to increase staffing after we move to the new consulate building next year,” a spokesperson said.