UK's Home Affairs Committee Investigates Indian Student Deportation

07 Jun 2016


UKs Home Affairs Committee Investigates Indian Student Deportation

"BBC Panorama" investigation uncovered this scam where immigration consultancies and international education agencies fraudulently charged international students poor in English, enabling them to bypass visa extensions tests and the ones for student visas. 

Keith Vaz was presiding over Home Affairs Select Committee of the House of Commons and they raised their concerns after the initial report that was released on Friday. The issue most definitely requires exhaustive investigation.

The initial inquiry was set up based on the verdict by the UK's upper tribunal (immigration and asylum chamber) that allowed a test appeal by two of the alleged students. This English test, conducted by a subsidiary of US-based ETS, is mandatory.

"We are deeply concerned with the arrests, dawn raids and aggressive deportations of students from outside the European Union (EU), which have occurred following allegations of fraud at English language testing centers," Labor MP Vaz said. "The home office appears not to have investigated English language testing fraud allegations themselves before undertaking heavy-handed action. Recent legal cases, with their damning criticisms from senior judges, have opened the door to a mass of expensive and damaging litigation.

The home office investigation results disclosed the test system’s obvious flaws. Nearly 100 institutions’ licenses were suspended along with deportation of students tested in the respective centers in response to the investigation.

In 2014, 48,000 students from across the globe were deported, out of which nearly 70 percent were Indian due to allegations of cheating on  English language tests.

"An estimated 70 percent of those affected are of Indian nationality, and this debacle comes at a time when Indian student numbers in the UK are declining. The UK risks causing extensive damage to its reputation as a leading destination for international study." Vaz added.

According to the Home Affairs Committee, an exhaustive investigation into all of the unresolved issues relating to English language testing can resolve this issue.

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