Choose colleges wisely, US tells Indian students

New Delhi: Prospective Indian students should thoroughly research educational institutes based in the US before taking admission to prevent any fraud, the US embassy said.

“The US government urges all prospective students to fully research their chosen educational institutes and have a firm grasp of what is and is not permitted under a student visa,” said.

The guidance comes on a day authorities in Annandale, Virginia, a suburb of Washington, raided on charges of fraud the offices of a university with 90 percent of the 2,400 students from India and a majority of them from Andhra Pradesh.

“All students must be aware that lack of physical attendance at classes (taking only online courses) is not acceptable, failure to maintain a full course load and unauthorized employment will result in an immediate violation of status,” the statement added.

According to the embassy, the number of Indian students who have applied for visas to study in the US increased by 20 percent over the same period last year.

“The embassy also is to provide accurate, free information that allows students and their families to research schools and to protect themselves from visa fraud rings,” it said.

It went on to say that violating the terms of a visa can result in deportation, arrest and even a bar on future travel to the country.

“It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that he or she is in accordance with the law,” it said.

According to the embassy, over one lakh Indian students are currently studying at universities across the US, and thousands more will join them in the coming academic year.

“Within the next months, the EducationUSA centre at US-India Educational Foundation in New Delhi is expecting to introduce a telephone hotline and virtual information hub for students,” the statement added. (IANS)