Visa Crunch

Visa Application Centers are re-opening in India from 20th November on a limited scale.

The Government of Canada has recently announced that it will be re-opening its Visa Application Centers (VACs) in India from 20th November.

Immigration applicants will be able to schedule their biometrics appointment in the cities of Delhi, Chandigarh, Jalandhar, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, and Bengaluru.

Biometrics are required by International applicants who want a visitor, work, or study visa in Canada. The process of submitting the biometrics of an individual includes their fingerprints and photograph. There is also a fee charged for the process. The sole purpose of submitting biometrics is to enable Canada to confirm the identity of international travelers when they enter the country.

The biometrics appointment will be scheduled for a limited number of candidates, and the priority will be given to international students and family class applicants. The government of Canada has stated that they will not allow walk-in clients, and all the biometric appointments must be booked well in advance. More appointments will eventually be available every following week.

This news comes across as a big relief for Canadian immigration aspirants as even though international students are exempt from Canada’s Covid-19 travel restrictions, Indian students who have not yet submitted their biometrics were not eligible to travel to Canada. This also applied to family class and skilled worker immigrants who are also exempt from the travel restrictions.

India has been Canada’s major source of immigrants and international students for the past few years. Canada welcomed over 85,000 immigrants from India in the year 2019, which was about a quarter of the 341,000 new permanent residents admitted by Canada in the same year.

Due to the re-opening of VACs, Indian applicants who want to immigrate to Canada to visit, work, or study can finally submit their biometrics and cross the only hurdle which was stopping them from traveling to Canada.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has also stated that if they have issued a unique Biometric Instructions Letter (BIL) to the applicant, they will receive more instructions to their email ID on how to schedule their biometric appointment.

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