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British MP calls for probe into treatment of skilled Indian migrants

Seema Malhotra (Photo by Ben Pruchnie/Getty Images)
Seema Malhotra (Photo by Ben Pruchnie/Getty Images)

Labour MP Seema Malhotra reportedly wants a debate in the UK parliament on how highly skilled migrant workers from India are treated by the Home Office.

A number of Indian doctors, teachers, entrepreneurs and other professionals gathered outside the Parliament on February 21 to protest against the “unfair” immigration rules that have jeopardized their residency status in the UK.

Unjustified refusals and delays in their applications have left them in a limbo, the protesters waving placards reading “We want justice” and “One, two, three, four, discrimination no more,” said.

According to reports, the applications of highly skilled professionals for indefinite leave to remain were turned down because of mistakes on their tax returns, and the home office, in the refusal letters, branded them a threat to national security.

Malhotra, who joined the protesters on Wednesday, told the Times of India that an investigation should be launched to figure out why the Home Office was branding these highly skilled professionals a threat to national security.

“There has to be an investigation into why they are using 322 (5),” Malhotra said. “It should not be used in this way destroying people’s livelihood, affecting their reputation and their ability to travel. There are ways of dealing with mistakes on a tax return but this rule should not be used in this way. I am going to call for a debate in Parliament about this.”

Meanwhile, the publication quoted a home official as saying that they aim to resolve all visa applications as quickly as possible. “It is vital however that the correct decisions are made, particularly with complex Tier 1 applications that require detailed consideration and verification of evidence with HMRC. These robust checks are essential to avoid the potential abuse of our immigration or tax system. Where such abuse is identified, we will act accordingly,” the official said.