Due to a recent reduction in staff on the ground, Canada has stated that it will only be able to process 20,000 of the 38,000 visas for Indians by the end of December this year.
Immigration Minister Marc Miller stated at this week’s Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration meeting that there are currently just five people working on visas in India, according to CIC News.
This month, the number of employees at Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), which handles visa applications, was cut from 27 to just five as a result of India’s request for Canada to remove its 41 diplomats in order to achieve diplomatic parity.
The IRCC now projects that at the start of 2024, there will be about 17,500 Indian applications pending. Senior officials from the nation’s top immigration department did, however, express optimism, stating that the government is attempting to resume regular processing of Indian applications by the beginning of 2024.
This is feasible, according to the IRCC, as the immigration officers who were expelled from India rebuild their lives and go back to work in Canada and the Philippines.
By modifying the workload for Visa Application Centers (VACs), which currently handle the majority of applications from India, IRCC is allegedly attempting to lessen the effects. In a statement issued last week, the IRCC stated that the vast majority of Indian applications are already being processed outside of the nation, with 89
According to the IRCC, “the five employees from Canada-based IRCC who are still in India will concentrate on tasks that necessitate an in-country presence, like urgent processing, visa printing, risk assessment, and managing important partners.”
80% of all applications are intended to be processed by the department within the service standards, which change based on the kind of application. When an application is not processed in accordance with service standards, it is backlogged.
The Indian consulates will continue to accept and process applications from India, but the IRCC has also temporarily stopped offering any in-person services.
India, on the other hand, partially restored its visa services in Canada starting on October 26 after they had been suspended due to deteriorating diplomatic relations. The Indian High Commission released a statement stating that the services for entry, business, medical, and conference visas will be available once again. The statement went on, “Further decisions, as appropriate, would be intimated based on continuing evaluation of the situation.”