Bangladeshi students express concern over US visa suspension

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Bangladeshi students: A group of prospective graduate students has expressed concerns over the ongoing suspension of new F-category visa services at the US Embassy in Dhaka, which has been causing disruption to their academic careers.

The Bangladeshi students group will also hold a press conference on Saturday (October 17) to press home their demands, said a press statement issued on Thursday.

“Every year, a large number of Bangladeshi students seek to pursue undergraduate and graduate [MS and Ph.D.] degrees from US universities.

Unfortunately, due to the Covid-19 pandemic this year, the US Embassy in Bangladesh has not resumed its regular visa services although a large number of students got admission at different US universities for Fall 2020 [August session],” they said in the statement

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“Therefore, many could not attend their prospective universities in due time. Some have lost their admissions already, some are doing courses online while the majority had to defer to Spring 2021 [January Session] as it is not possible for every student to study online,” the statement read.

They also expressed concerns that many more may lose their admission to various US universities if new F-category visas were not issued before the Spring 2021 session.

“It is to be mentioned that, recently the US Embassy has only resumed interview-waiver applications for continuing F-category students.

This, unfortunately, is not for the new students who intend to begin their studies in the US,” the statement added.

“Now, if the US Embassy Dhaka does not resume the New F-Category visa services before Spring 2021 (January Session), we all will be unable to reach our prospective universities within the revised deadline and will lose our admissions.”

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They also expressed fears that the universities were highly likely to replace their positions with from neighboring countries (India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka) as new F-category US visas were being issued in those countries.

The prospective students have already contacted the US Embassy Bangladesh and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina about their visa issues.

The representatives of the students have also met the Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen regarding the issue and the minister assured them that he would bring up the issue to US Deputy Secretary of State Stephen E Biegun, who is visiting Bangladesh on a three-day visit.

Bangladeshi students/ Dhaka tribune

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