NEW DELHI: The US embassy here said on Thursday it has processed over 10 lakh non-immigrant visa applications so far this year, a first for India. This is almost 20% more than the numbers processed in pre-Covid 2019 and 2022. “Indians now represent over 10% of all visa applicants worldwide, including 20% of all student visa applicants, and 65% of all H & L category (employment) visa applicants,” the embassy said while welcoming this growth.
Last year over 12 lakh Indians visited the US. Early next year, the US embassy says it plans to implement a pilot programme that would allow domestic visa renewal for qualified H & L category employment visa applicants.
US ambassador to India Eric Garcetti said: “Our partnership with India is one of the United States‘ most important bilateral relationships, and in fact one of the most important relationships in the world. The ties between our people are stronger than ever, and we will continue our record-setting volume of visa work in the coming months to give as many Indian applicants as possible the opportunity to travel to the US and experience the US-India friendship firsthand.”
The wait period for B1/B2 visitor visa applicants in India is still about 1.5 years, though this is much lower than the almost three years it had touched last winter. The embassy said it has taken a series of steps to bring down the wait time, including expanding its staff and improving existing facilities.

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