NRI News ( Page 1 of 22 )

List View Grid View

Australia doubles student visa fees to curb Migration July 01, 2024 10:51

The Australian government has introduced a significant increase in the fees for international students, more than doubling the cost from AUD 710 ($473) to AUD 1,600 ($1,068). This new measure, implemented by the Anthony Albanese government, effective July 1, aims to curb the high influx of migrants that has put pressure on the housing market. The move is likely to affect Indian students, who make up the second-largest group of international students in Australia. Additionally, temporary visa holders, such as those on Temporary Graduate, Visitor, and Maritime Crew visas, will no longer be eligible to apply for a student visa while they are in the country. This change will impact thousands of Indian students currently residing in Australia. The Minister for Home Affairs and Cyber Security, Clare O'Neil, stated that "The changes coming into force today will help restore integrity to our international education system, and create a migration system which is fairer, smaller and better able to deliver for Australia." The Australian government's crackdown is intended to ensure that only genuine students are granted visas, thereby supporting the country's economic growth. The recent government data reveals a substantial influx of Indian students into Australian educational institutions. In 2022, over 100,000 Indian students were enrolled, and this number grew to 1.22 lakh during the January-September 2023 period. However, the increasing costs associated with obtaining an Australian student visa have made it significantly more expensive compared to options in the United States and Canada, where the fees are around $185 and CAD 150 ($110), respectively, as reported by Reuters. In response, the Australian government has announced measures to close loopholes in visa regulations that allowed foreign students to extend their stay repeatedly. This decision comes after observing a surge of over 30% in the number of students holding a second or subsequent student visa, reaching more than 150,000 in the 2022–23 academic year. Additionally, the government has raised the minimum savings requirement for student visas from AUD 24,505 ($16,146) to AUD 29,710 ($19,576).

Read More

Indian Man Shot Dead During Texas Robbery June 24, 2024 08:00

A 32-year-old Indian man was shot in a robbery incident that took place in USA in the state of Texas and the tragic indicent took place in a grocery store. Dasari Gopikrishna, a native of Andhra Pradesh's Bapatla district, arrived in America just eight months ago. The incident happened on June 21 at a gas station in Pleasant Grove, Dallas. The DC Consul General was in Dallas on Sunday for Yoga Day. Manjunath confirmed to PTI that the incident was not related to the Arkansas shooting. As various sources have already reported. Condolences to the Gopikrishna family, Mr. Manjunath said, “We are contacting the local family members after learning of the tragic death of Gopi Krishna Dasari of Indian origin at Pleasant Grove, Dallas, Texas.” A resident of #AndhraPradesh died in #America. Gopikrishna native of Bapatla district is residing in America. Gopikrishna was injured in a shooting at a store in Dallas. He died while undergoing treatment at the hospital. Gopikrishna went to America 11 months ago. pic.twitter.com/s9yY2eVP6b — Sowmith Yakkati (@YakkatiSowmith) June 23, 2024 The Consulate General of India, with the support of Indian associations, will provide all assistance in repatriating Mr. Gopikrishna's body to India, with local formalities including autopsy and issuance of death certificates. Mr Gopikrishna sustained serious injuries during the robbery and was taken to a nearby hospital where he succumbed to his injuries on Sunday morning. The incident deeply affected the Indian community in and around Dallas. Mr. Gopikrishna is survived by his wife and son.

Read More

Schengen Visa: Europe Trip Gets Costlier from Today June 11, 2024 11:00

Starting today, June 11, 2024, travelers to Europe will face higher visa application fees. The European Commission has implemented a 12% increase in Schengen Visa fees, affecting applicants worldwide. This move aligns with the bloc's efforts to boost tourism in the region. Under the new fee structure, adult applicants will now pay €90, up from €80, and children aged 6-12 will pay €45, increased from €40. Countries deemed uncooperative with the EU's repatriation efforts will experience steeper hikes, with fees reaching €135 or €180. The Slovenian government has confirmed the European Commission's decision to raise short-stay Schengen visa (visa type C) fees globally by 12%, effective from June 11, 2024. The Commission cites inflation and rising civil servant salaries as justifications for this increase, which follows a scheduled review of EU visa fees that took place in December 2023, as required by the Schengen Visa Code every three years. The Schengen visa system encompasses a group of European nations, including Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway (though not officially a member, it adheres to the regulations), Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland. This development has brought disappointment, particularly for Turkish citizens who have long awaited a visa-free travel agreement with the EU. In 2023, the Schengen region experienced a significant increase in short-stay visa applications, reaching over 10.3 million, representing a 37% year-on-year rise. However, this figure still falls short of the pre-pandemic peak of 17 million applications received in 2019. India secured the third position in terms of visa applications for Europe, with a total of 966,687 submissions. The recent visa fee hike coincides with Europe's efforts to attract tourists from around the globe. Notably, on April 18, 2024, the European Commission introduced a new visa regime specifically for Indian citizens residing in India, referred to as a "visa cascade", which includes easier access to multi-entry visas, rewarding positive visa history, and the potential for a five-year visa.

Read More

Telugu girl Nitheesha Kandula goes missing in Los Angeles June 03, 2024 11:06

A mysterious disappearance has left authorities in California searching for a young Indian student. Nitheesha Kandula, a 23-year-old enrolled at California State University, San Bernardino (CSUSB), was last seen in Los Angeles on May 28th. Her family reported her missing two days later. CSUSB Police Chief John Guttierez has appealed to the public for any information regarding Kandula's whereabouts, sharing her physical description and the details of the car she may have been driving, a 2021 Toyota Corolla with a California license plate. Law enforcement agencies, including the CSUSB Police and the Los Angeles Police Department, are working together to locate the missing student. The circumstances surrounding her disappearance remain unclear. This incident comes just a month after another Indian student, Rupesh Chandra Chintakindi, 26, went missing in Chicago. Authorities are urging anyone with relevant information to contact the CSUSB Police Department or the LAPD's Southwest Division, in the hopes of bringing Nitheesha Kandula home safely. In April, a young man from Hyderabad named Mohammed Abdul Arfath, aged 25, was tragically found deceased in Cleveland after disappearing in March. Additionally, in December 2023, the FBI escalated its search efforts for 29-year-old Mayushi Bhagat, an Indian student who vanished in the US after leaving her New Jersey apartment on April 29, 2019. She was reported missing on May 1 of the same year. The FBI is now offering a substantial $10,000 reward for any information that could lead to the discovery of Mayushi Bhagat's whereabouts. The FBI's website states, "We are offering a reward of up to $10,000 for details that could assist in locating or recovering the missing person, Mayushi Bhagat, and for the identification, arrest, and conviction of the individual(s) responsible."

Read More

Telangana girl hit by Speeding Car While Crossing Road In US May 28, 2024 10:15

A 25-year-old woman from Telangana has died after being hit by a car in Florida, her family said on Monday. Guntipalli Soumya died on the spot after she was hit by a speeding car while crossing the road on Sunday evening, her family said. Sowmya, who hails from Yadagaripalli in Yadadri Bongir district, went to America for further studies. After earning a master's degree from Florida Atlantic University, he looked for work. Soumya's family was shocked to learn of her death. His parents Koteswara Rao and Balamani appealed to the central and state governments to take his body to India. Telangana Minister Komati Reddy Venkat Reddy expressed his condolences to Soumya's family. According to him, they are trying to return his body. He went to study in America two years ago. He is said to have been trying to find a job after completing his master's degree. Soumya, a resident of Yatakaripalle village in Telangana, was looking for a job. Her parents Koteswara Rao and Balamani were deeply saddened to hear the sad news of their daughter's death. Soumya's family has appealed to the government to help bring her body to Telangana. Koteswara Rao, a former CRPF jawan, said his daughter had recently celebrated her 25th birthday on May 11. “I even sent him clothes,” he lamented over his loss. According to the GoFundMe website, Soumya's father struggled to raise money for her education and sacrificed a lot to give her a chance to fulfill her dream. Rao currently runs a general store (Kirana Store) in Telangana.

Read More

Indian Student Dies in USA in a Bike Mishap May 24, 2024 10:47

On Thursday, the Consulate General of India in New York informed that an Indian student, Shri Belem Atchyuth, had passed away in a bike accident on Wednesday. Shri Atchyuth was attending the State University of New York at the time of his death. The Consulate General expressed their condolences to his family and stated that they were in contact with them. They also reached out to local agencies for support. In a post on X, the Consulate General of India in New York shared their sadness over Shri Atchyuth's sudden passing and offered their deepest sympathies to his loved ones. They reassured that @IndiainNewYork is working closely with both the family and local authorities to provide necessary assistance, such as repatriating his remains back to India. Saddened to learn about the untimely demise of Shri Belem Atchyuth, a student at SUNY who met with a bike accident and passed away yesterday evening; our deepest condolences to the family; @IndiainNewYork is in touch with the bereaved family & local agencies to extend all… — India in New York (@IndiainNewYork) May 23, 2024 The recent incident is part of a concerning trend of deaths among Indian-origin students in the US. In April, the Consulate General of India in New York reported the tragic death of an Indian student, who had been missing since March, in Ohio. The consulate expressed its sorrow over the loss and is working with local authorities to ensure a thorough investigation into the case. In a post on their official X handle, they offered their deepest condolences to Mr. Mohammed Arfath's family upon learning about his passing in Cleveland, Ohio. Arafat, originally from Hyderabad, went to the US in May 2023 to pursue a Master's degree in IT from Cleveland University. However, he has been missing since March 7 of this year. According to Arafat's father, Mohd Saleem, they received a phone call about 10 days after his disappearance from an anonymous individual claiming that Arafat had been abducted. The caller demanded a ransom of USD 1200 for his safe return. In April, a fellow Indian student in Cleveland named Uma Satya Sai Gadde passed away and an investigation is currently ongoing. Additionally, in February of this year, another Indian student was brutally attacked in Chicago. The Indian Consulate in Chicago has taken note of these incidents and has been providing support to the victim, Syed Mazahir Ali, as well as his wife in India.

Read More

Indian student stabbed to death in Australia May 07, 2024 11:10

A young man from India, who was pursuing a master's degree in technology, was killed in Australia. The incident took place during a fight between some Indian students. The authorities are looking for two Indian-origin brothers in connection with the murder. According to the victim's uncle in Karnal, Haryana, Navjeet Sandhu was fatally attacked with a knife when he tried to intervene in a dispute between some Indian students over rent. Navjeet's friend had asked him to come along to his house to pick up some belongings. When Navjeet reached the house, he saw that there was a fight going on. He tried to intervene, but was stabbed in the chest. The alleged accused is also from Karnal. Navjeet's friend was also injured in the incident. The family received the news of the incident early Sunday morning and is in a state of shock. Yashvir revealed that his brother Navjeet had moved to Australia on a study visa a year and a half ago. His father had sold one and a half acres of land to support his education. Yashvir requested the Indian government's assistance to bring Navjeet's body home. Meanwhile, the Victoria Police are on a hunt for two men in connection with a stabbing incident in Ormond, Melbourne. The suspects are brothers Abhijeet and Robin Gartan, both of Indian origin. Abhijeet is 26 years old, 170cm tall, with a solid build and black hair. Robin is 27 years old, 170cm tall, with a solid build and black hair. The duo is believed to be travelling in a stolen white Toyota Camry sedan. They were last seen in the Ormond area shortly after the dispute occurred at 1 am on Sunday. Victoria Police reported that several individuals sustained injuries from stabbings, but the victims remain anonymous. Authorities are currently on the lookout for two men who are believed to have fled the scene. According to police, the individuals involved in the altercation were acquainted with each other, but the reason for the conflict is still under investigation.

Read More

Indian-origin man with ‘bipolar disorder’ shot dead by US police April 27, 2024 09:27

Sachin Sahoo, a 42-year-old man with bipolar disorder, was fatally shot by police in San Antonio on April 21. The incident occurred when Sahoo attempted to escape arrest for an aggravated assault case by hitting two officers with his vehicle. Officer Tyler Turner fired the fatal shot, according to investigators from the San Antonio Police Department (SAPD). Sahoo, who was originally from Uttar Pradesh, may have been a naturalized US citizen. The police were called to the Cheviot Heights area of San Antonio following a report of an aggravated assault with a dangerous weapon. Upon arrival, they discovered that Sahoo had collided with his 51-year-old roommate, Candace Byrnes, whom he had only known for about a month. Byrnes suffered serious injuries, including two broken bones in her pelvis and brain bleeds, requiring surgery. Following a certain condition, Sahoo was issued an arrest warrant by the police. However, the neighbors alerted the authorities that Sahoo had returned to the original location. Upon the arrival of the policemen at the scene and their attempt to communicate with Sahoo, he struck them with his car. In response, one of the officers discharged his firearm, resulting in Sahoo's demise. One of the injured officers received immediate medical attention, while the other was transported to a nearby hospital for treatment. Officer Tyler Turner, who has been with the department for five years, has been placed on routine administrative leave as the SAPD investigates the shooting incident. Candace Byrnes encountered Sahoo outside the Salvation Army, where he introduced himself as an Uber driver and offered her a place to stay in exchange for assistance around the house. Initially feeling secure, Byrnes later noticed Sahoo engaged in self-conversation. Byrnes claimed that Sahoo had stopped taking his medication and desired a more intimate relationship than just friendship. According to her, Sahoo became enraged when she informed him of her intention to leave temporarily and return within a few hours.

Read More

Indians can now get five-year multi-entry Schengen visa April 24, 2024 11:07

Indian nationals can now benefit from a new visa system introduced by the European Union (EU), known as the "cascade" regime. Under this system, Indian citizens are eligible to receive long-term, multi-entry Schengen visas that are valid for a period of two years. This is a significant improvement compared to the previous visas, which had shorter validity periods. To be eligible for the two-year visa, applicants must have previously obtained and lawfully used two Schengen visas within the past three years. Upon successfully utilizing the two-year visa, Indian travelers can expect to receive a five-year Schengen visa, provided that their passport has enough remaining validity. Holding a valid two-year or five-year visa grants Indian citizens the same travel rights within the Schengen area as visa-free nationals. This means that they can freely travel within the member countries for short stays, typically up to 90 days in any 180-day period, without requiring additional permits. According to the statement, the initial two-year visa is usually followed by a five-year visa, depending on the remaining validity of the passport. Throughout the duration of these visas, holders enjoy the same travel privileges as visa-exempt nationals. The "cascade" system is designed to reward frequent travelers by gradually increasing the length of their visas. Upon successful utilization, the visa grants you the potential to be eligible for a visa lasting five years. Within the Schengen visa, individuals are granted the freedom to explore the Schengen area, allowing for short stays of up to 90 days within a 180-day period. Although these visas are not limited to a specific purpose, they do not grant the right to work. The Schengen area consists of 29 European countries, including 25 member states of the European Union: Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Estonia, Greece, Spain, France, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Hungary, Malta, Netherlands, Austria, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Finland, and Sweden. It also includes Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland. This decision is made in the context of strengthening relations under the EU-India Common Agenda on Migration and Mobility, which aims for comprehensive cooperation on migration policy between the EU and India. The facilitation of people-to-people contacts is a crucial aspect due to India's importance as an EU partner. On April 18, 2024, the European Commission implemented specific regulations for issuing multiple-entry visas to Indian nationals, which are more advantageous compared to the previous standard rules of the Visa Code. Travellers in India will now have easier access to visas that are valid for multiple years, as long as their passport allows it. This new policy is especially beneficial for those who frequently journey to and from India.

Read More

Three Indians trying to enter USA ilegally Arrested March 15, 2024 06:46

Four individuals, including three Indian nationals, were apprehended by US Border Patrol while attempting to enter the United States illegally on a freight train from Canada. The incident occurred on the International Railroad Bridge in Buffalo, New York, as the individuals jumped off a moving train. Despite sustaining injuries, a woman was unable to flee and was left behind by the men who were eventually caught after a chase. The injured woman received immediate medical attention from Erie County Sheriff's deputies and US Customs and Border Protection officers before being transferred to a local hospital. According to officials, the woman and two of the men were identified as Indian nationals, while the fourth individual was from the Dominican Republic. All four were undocumented non-citizens. The woman is currently receiving additional medical care in accordance with the Immigration and Nationality Act. Several Indians who tried to enter into the USA ilegally have been arrested.

Read More

Australia scraps Golden Visa Programme January 23, 2024 11:19

Australia has made the decision to end its "golden visa" program, which allowed wealthy foreign investors to live in the country. The government cited poor economic results as the reason for scrapping the program, and it will be replaced with a visa that focuses on skills. The significant investor visas (SIV) were originally implemented to attract investment and promote innovation in Australia. To qualify for the visa, candidates were required to invest 5 million Australian dollars in the country. However, the program faced criticism for contributing to corruption and allowing foreign nationals to bring illegal funds into Australia. Notably, the majority of successful applicants were from China, with 85% of the SIVs granted to Chinese investors. "It has been clear for a long time that this visa does not meet the needs of our country and economy," stated Clare O'Neil, the Minister of Home Affairs. Australia, following in the footsteps of countries like the United Kingdom, has decided to join the list of European nations that have banned similar investment-based residency programs. This decision was made due to concerns about the potential influx of illegal money into the country. The UK, for example, ended its own investment-driven residency program in 2022 out of fear that money launderers from Russia were taking advantage of the program to reside in the UK. Clancy Moore, the CEO of Transparency International Australia, expressed his satisfaction with this development. He had been leading a movement against these so-called "golden visa" programs, citing their alleged flaws and vulnerabilities. According to Moore, corrupt officials and kleptocrats have long used these programs as a means to park their illicit funds in Australia and potentially conceal the proceeds of their criminal activities.

Read More

Three arrested for assaulting Indian student for three months in USA December 01, 2023 11:48

In a shocking and appalling case, a 20-year-old Indian student in the US has been rescued from months of inhumane captivity and abuse. The student, whose name has not been disclosed, endured unimaginable suffering and was subjected to physical violence, including beatings and threats with weapons. The incident highlights the urgent need for routine screening and care for vulnerable populations, including immigrants, refugees, and underserved communities. These populations are often at higher risk of experiencing human trafficking, exploitation, and various forms of violence. Furthermore, the ordeal faced by the Indian student brings attention to the broader issue of human rights violations and abuse across different contexts. It also sheds light on the challenges faced by Native American students and their struggle to engage in post-secondary institutions due to a history of forced assimilation and inhumane treatment. Human rights violations, torture, trauma, and limited access to basic human needs such as food and shelter are unfortunately common experiences among people seeking asylum. These individuals often come from resource-poor countries where access to healthcare is limited, exacerbating their vulnerability and increasing the need for support and protection. This incident serves as a reminder of the intersecting oppressions and traumas experienced by victims of human trafficking.

Read More