Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has called on the government to add India to the list of countries offered a streamlined student UK visa application process, stating that it is crucial the country maintains its reputation for excellence in higher education.
In a letter to home secretary Sajid Javid, the mayor stated that he was concerned that India should not have been excluded from the recently expanded student visa list, which saw countries such as the Maldives, Serbia, Bahrain and Mexico included in the scheme.
“It is vital the UK maintains its reputation for higher education excellence. The number of Indian students choosing to study in the UK has declined significantly over the last decade,” Mr Khan said in a statement.
“I’m urging him [Sajid Javid] to both add India to the scheme and also to review the UK’s broader approach to attracting international student talent, including post-study opportunities,” he said.
The absence of India from the list has lea to outcry among student groups and other senior leaders, who have stated that the move will contribute to the annual reduction in the Indian students coming to the UK that is currently taking place.