As wait time for visa appointments in India reaches over two years, a controversy raged over social media comparing the timeframe to appointments for visa in China.
Applicants in New Delhi for the B-1 business visa and B-2 tourism visa face an estimated wait time of 833 days, or more than two years, to receive an interview appointment, according to the US state department’s website. This means that a person applying for a visitor visa is expected to get an appointment in January 2025.
The time at the consulate in Kolkata for these visas is 767 days, and the figure for the consulate in Mumbai is 848 days.
In contrast, the wait times for visa applicants living in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou are significantly shorter compared to Indian cities. The wait time at the US embassy in the Chinese capital of Beijing is two days.
The US Embassy in India on Tuesday announced it has opened the appointments for all categories of visas adding that the wait time remains high owing to high demand for the visas, reduced staffing and pandemic-related disruptions in operations since March 2020.
Foreign Minister S Jaishankar said this week that he flagged visa related challenges for Indians to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in their meeting. Blinken reassured Jaishankar that the United States was aiming to address those concerns.