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Indians are Running for US Citizenship before Trump shut the doors

Who does not want to be a US national, almost every second Indian has an aspiration to migrate to the US and acquire the green card which gives the tremendous amount of power cause the green card holders can opt for naturalisation. But now with Donald Trump in the power, things are not going to be same anymore. There is a wave of uncertainty amongst the immigrants over the Donald Trump administration’s immigration policies coupled with a desire to vote in the upcoming elections this year. 

The US law allows citizenship (Green Card) to the individuals with a minimum of five years of permanent residents of the USA. According to the reports, around 8.34 lakhs immigrants have opted for American Citizenship during the fiscal year 2019 which is 11 years high with 9.5% rise over the previous year. 

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), in a press release, added that 5.77 lakh individuals were granted lawful permanent residence in the form of green cards which, compared with fiscal 2018, shows a sharp fall of 47.4%. 

The sources have revealed that the Indian born individuals are the second-largest groups that were granted the green card by the US in the fiscal year 2018. The largest groups of immigrants continue to be from Mexico with the figure touching to 1.3 and the Chinese come at the third spot with 39,600 immigrants. 

According to another report released by the US Department of Homeland Security which provides country-of-birth data. They constituted 6.9% of the total number of new citizens and reflected a rise of 2.7% over the previous year. 

The report suggests that recently the process has been slowed down due to which the number of applications pending for the green cards and citizenship had come down by 14% from 12% previously. 

There are as many as 9.2 Lakh Indians have caught up in the green card backlog, as mentioned earlier only the green case holders can opt for Naturalisation (the process which confers US citizenship upon foreign nationals); they can do so after being a permanent resident for five years. For spouses of US citizens, the period is reduced to three years. 

Trump seems to have played a very good card right before the elections by creating a sense of uncertainty on the immigration front and now the immigrant expert feels that the rise in citizenship is due to the prevailing uncertainty and in migration policy front which even renders green card holders vulnerable, and the desire to vote in the forthcoming elections. 

In the green card slot, the Indian born individuals have occupied the fourth slot with 59,281 green cards issued to them while Mexico remains on the first followed by Cuba and China, said the sources.

Further, the comparison of statistical growth shows a negative figure for most countries, except Cuba. Increased vetting of green card applications contributed to the negative growth, said the immigration experts. 

According to data collated by CATO, a US-based think-tank, as of April 2018, 13.1lakh Mexicans (or 28% of the total backlog) were caught up in the green card backlog in both family and employment categories. Indians followed, with 9.2 lakh (or 19% of the total backlog).

Source: TOI 

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