To prevent the drop in the number of the Indian students going to the UK for higher education, London mayor Boris Johnson is trying to persuade a special visa for Commonwealth citizens. According to statistics, the number of Indian students coming to study in Britain has reduced to half from 39,090 in 2010-2011 to 19,750 in 2013-2014.
The key reason behind this dramatic decrease in the number of students has been due to the restrictions on the post-study work visa. The student visa, which has earlier allowed students to stay and look for a job for up to 2 years after completing their course.
Under the current visa provisions, students have only 4 months to find work and must be paid a minimum salary of 20,800 pounds, compared to earlier when they had two years for the job-hunt process in the UK.
Indian high commissioner to the UK Ranjan Mathai suggested that top-tier British universities should be more involved in vetting students alongside the Home Office. "We strongly feel that the universities should be part of this process of ensuring that students are able to come if they meet the requirements, and they should be part of the dialogue," as reported in PTI.
"We believe that in our interconnected world, students should be able to access the best in higher education. We have a huge number of foreign students coming to India also, so it's not just a one-way process," he said.
However, under immense pressure to reduce net migration into the UK from its current record high of 330,000, UK home secretary Theresa May is up for a clash with her other cabinet colleagues who believe foreign students should be kept out of the total net migration figures.