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Corporates, rights bodies slam Trump admin’s H-1B move

Top US lawmakers, corporates and human rights bodies working among the immigrant communities have slammed the Trump administration for suspending H-1B and other foreign work visas till December 31 to help millions of Americans hit by job losses during the coronavirus pandemic.

The decision, which is being described as part of an ‘America-first recovery’ effort, would free up 5,25,000 jobs in the US for American workers, officials said.

Hit by the pandemic, nearly 40 million Americans have lost their jobs in the last couple of months as the US economy has come to a halt due to the deadly virus that has so far has killed more than 120,000 people in America, the worst-hit country by the virus.

The decision is expected to impact a large number of Indian IT professionals and several American and Indian companies who were issued H-1B visas by the US government for the fiscal year 2021 beginning October 1. They would now have to wait at least till the end of the current year before approaching the US diplomatic missions to get stamping. It would also impact a large number of Indian IT professionals who are seeking renewal of their H-1B visas.

Sundar Pichai, Indian-American CEO of Google, expressed disappointment over the proclamation, saying that immigration has contributed immensely to America’s economic success, making it a global leader in tech, and also Google, the company it is today.

“Disappointed by today’s proclamation - we’ll continue to stand with immigrants and work to expand opportunity for all,” Pichai said.

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