Foreign students in India to be given work rights

Foreign students in India to be given work rights

Foreign students in India pursuing higher education will soon be allowed to work in the country.

This comes as the Indian government’s Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD) said it prepared its proposals granting limited working permit to international students in select areas as part of its efforts to increase the number of enrollees in higher education institutions (HEIs).

The aim is to bring in place an enabling framework for internationalisation of higher education institutions in the country.

Work permit, paid internship sought

Apart from the work permit, the HRD also planned to relax visa rules for international students to be valid for the entire study period and allow a paid-internship programme—both of which are not allowed at present.

It also sought for a system in place for the facilitation of the Foreigner Regional Registration Office (FRRO) registration either through the campuses or online, particularly institutions that are participating in the Study in India programme.

“An appropriate mechanism needs to be put in place to address genuine concerns and difficulties faced by international students with regard to visa, registration, an extension of stay, tax rules and regulations,” an unnamed ministry official said.

Ease limit of 15% foreign students in India HEIs

The ministry is likewise considering a proposal to ease the ceiling of 15 percent supernumerary seats per higher education institution for admission of foreign students in India.

“Some institutions have sought permission to raise this limit to enroll more international students. The upper cap of 15 percent supernumerary seats is proposed be done away with for the top-ranked institutions and raised to 30 percent, particularly for those participating in ‘Study in India’ programme,” the ministry official said.

The HRD said it will soon present the proposals to the Union Home Ministry.

“This issue will be relooked to allow limited work permit in selected areas/segments where there is an imbalance in demand and supply and shortage of trained or highly skilled human resources in India,” a ministry member said.

Strengthening Study In India programme urged

The Modi government at present is focusing on its Study in India programme to attract more foreign students. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman also last week urged to strengthen the programme, saying that India has the potential to become a hub for higher education.

Photo: Parliament of India

Hari Srinivasan - Managing Editor, Global Education Times (GET News)

Hari is the Managing Editor of Global Education Times. Hari has clocked nearly a decade working as a communications professional with a focus on the education sector. He has also had stints in journalism and advertising in a career which has seen him live, study, and work, in three countries.
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