New Delhi, November 10
The waiting period for US visas is expected to see a significant fall by summer of 2023 and the number of visa applications is projected to reach around 1.2 million, a senior official of the US embassy said on Thursday.
The processing time for nearly all categories of US visas is among the highest in India, with B1 and B2 visa applicants have to wait for 925 days as against just two days for Beijing and 44 days for Tokyo.
At a special briefing to clear the air on the matter, the official said 82,000 student visas for India had already been issued this year and the next priority was to reduce the waiting time for non-immigrant work visas in the H and L categories, including H-1B, B-1, B-2 and visas for crews of shipping companies and airlines.
H-1B visa holders in the US, who want to visit India for family reunions, will get special attention.
As per the official, the visa-issuing Bureau of Consular Affairs was hit hard by Covid, affecting its operations and income.