72,000 students go abroad this year after 55% dip in 2020 | Bengaluru News – Times of India


BENGALURU: After a massive dip in 2020 due to Covid-19, the first two months of 2021 have seen nearly 72,000 Indians go abroad to study. Immigration experts anticipate a spike when visa appointments open up for the main admission season post July.

The Covid-19 pandemic had resulted in a 55% dip in 2020 with around 2.6 lakh students going abroad compared to nearly 5.9 lakh in 2019, according to the ministry of external affairs.
Most students in 2021 are from Andhra Pradesh (11,790) and Maharashtra (10,166), while Punjab, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka also saw hundreds of them. These six states accounted for more than 59% (42,661 students).
‘Last year, many didn’t process visas in Sept’
Last year, many students did not process their visas in the usual September season. They did one semester here and processed their visas in January 2021 and went abroad. Also, not too many visa appointments were available during the admission season last year although countries did prioritise student visas,” Poorvi Chothani, founder and managing partner, LawQuest, a global immigration law fir m, said.
Echoing Chothani’s views, Sumeet Jain, co-founder, Yocket, said: “Most students could be attending spring semesters in the US and Canada as the UK and Australia-New Zealand have not opened up yet. While visas for the US opened last October, many students couldn’t go. These numbers reflect existing demand. The numbers will see spike in the second half this year.”
In five years before 2021, nearly 22 lakh Indian students went abroad for studies and nearly a quarter were from Andhra Pradesh and Punjab. Six states — Andhra Pradesh, Punjab, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka — account for 56% of all students going abroad.
Chothani sees many students wanting to go abroad in September 2021. “Those who took a gap year because of Covid will be part of this year’s departures in addition to the current batch. There could be a 42% increase, compared to 2019, in students going to the US,” Chothani added. Till January 2021, there were over 10.9 lakh Indians studying in 85 countries. Most were in Canada and the US, followed by the UAE, Australia, the UK, China. Germany and France.

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Sagar Biswas

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