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Guess which country’s citizens hold the record for the highest number of H1B visas to the US?

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WASHINGTON (Diya TV) — The amount of H-1B visas issued to Indian nationals remains the highest, constituting 70 percent of those issued worldwide, according to Michelle Bond, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Consular Affairs.

“Indian citizens receive almost 70% of all the H-1B visa issued worldwide,” Bond said. “Overwhelmingly, Indian applicants are the ones who are successful in qualifying for these visas.”

Bond, who was visiting India to hold the fifth annual Consular dialogue with her counterparts at the MEA, added that 11,000 Indian citizens were issued H-1Bs between October 2015 and September 2015. The U.S. doubled the fees to $4000 for H-1B and to $4,500 for L-1 at the end of last year.

“These specific visa where the fees changed – the H and L visas – we have seen no drop in the number of applications for those visas, no lessening of interest in obtaining those visas. It was a legislative change, so we were implementing that law,” she said in explanation.

The news of Indian’s usage of the visa comes on the heels of a congressional bill two lawmakers are seeking to introduce — the “H-1B and L-1 Visa Reform Act of 2016” introduced by Democratic Congressman Bill Pascrell from New Jersey and Republican Dana Rohrabacher from California would prohibit companies from hiring H-1B and L-1 visa employees if they employ more than 50 people and more than 50 percent of their employees are H-1B and L-1 visa holders.

“America is producing many skilled, high-tech professionals with advanced degrees and no jobs. By ‘in-sourcing’ and exploiting foreign workers, some businesses are abusing the visa programs and undercutting our workforce to reap the rewards,” Pascrell said in a statement.

“Without the critical reforms our bill proposes, American workers will continue to be unfairly displaced and visa workers will continue to be mistreated — both of which are unacceptable,” he added.

Pascrell and Rohrabacher had introduced a similar version of this bill in 2010, which could not gain enough support in the Congress.

The duo of lawmakers added that the proposed legislation would aid in combatting visa fraud and abuse, provide protections for American workers and visa holders, require more transparency in the recruitment of foreign workers, and increase penalties for those who violate the law.

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Reps. Omar, Talib introduce legislation to reprimand India

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Reps. Omar, Talib ask State Dept. to reprimand India | Diya TV News

WASHINGTON DC (Diya TV) — Democratic Congresswoman Ilhan Omar is introducing legislation calling on the State Department to call India an egregious violator of religious freedom. Along with Omar, fellow Muslim Congresswoman Rashida Talib is also sponsoring the bill, which accuses India of human rights violations against religious and cultural minorities.

Former US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley visited British Home Secretary Priti Patel who took to Twitter to say they had a great time together and talked about ways to strengthen the partnership between America and Great Britain. Both are seen as strong conservative Indian women and Haley has also suggested the European Union should split up.

Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister says its troubled economy has collapsed and the country is unable to even pay for oil imports. The country is now seeking help from international lenders. India has already been trying to help.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Dr. Arati Prabhakar named White House OSTP Director 

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Dr. Arati Prabhakar named White House OSTP Director | Diya TV News

WASHINGTON DC (Diya TV) — President Biden intends to nominate Indian American Arati Prabhakar as director of the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policymaking her the first woman, immigrant, or person of color nominated to hold the position.

Indian American executive Vishal Garg leads Better.com and is now being sued by a former employee, alleging the company provided misleading statements to investors about the digital mortgage firm’s financial prospects and performance so a merger would go through. A Better.com attorney says the claims are without merit.

Comedian and “Parks & Recreation” star Aziz Ansar married Swedish forensic data scientist Serena Skov Campbell. The comic wed Campbell in front of around 120 people in northern Italy.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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NYC police arrest suspected murderer of Kinshuk Patel

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NYC police arrest suspected murderer of Kinshuk Patel | Diya TV News

NEW YORK CITY (Diya TV) — Police in New York have made an arrest in the brutal murder of an Indian American smoke shop owner. Authorities say 33 year old Kinshuk Patel was killed last year during a botched robbery by Yoel Atzmon who is believed to be homeless. Patel leaves behind a wife and two children.

India granted visas to more than 100 Afghan Sikhs and Hindus while dozens of applications are still pending. The move came immediately after a terror attack at a Sikh temple in the country, killing several people.

At least 84 people have died in landslides, lightning strikes, and flash floods across India and Bangladesh in the past week. Northeastern India and northern Bangladesh have been particularly badly hit by severe weather, which has prompted some of the worst flooding in the region in years and left some towns cut off.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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