Pune, 22nd September 2023: The surge in Indian students pursuing engineering and management education in Canada is undeniable. As the Canadian colleges gear up for their September sessions, the visa process for these students has been successfully completed. However, a cloud of uncertainty hangs over the upcoming batches scheduled for January and March.
While the Government of India has halted visa processing for Canadian citizens, the Government of Canada has remained silent on their visa policies. This lack of communication has left students in a state of confusion. Additionally, the Canadian Embassy in India has suspended all visa procedures, compounding the challenges faced by students planning to head to Canada for education in the upcoming sessions.
An official from an education consultancy firm, highlights the situation: “Compared to the United States, approximately 20 percent of students choose Canada as their destination for higher education, with a significant preference for management science programs.”
With the September college sessions already underway, visa processing has been smooth for current students. However, the focus now turns to those planning to commence their studies in January. He adds, “The students already in Canada are not experiencing any issues and are engrossed in their academic pursuits.” Notably, a majority of students heading to Canada for education hail from Punjab.
Canada, renowned for its picturesque landscapes and attractions, attracts a significant number of tourists. Popular destinations include Toronto, Montreal, Quebec City, Vancouver, Niagara Falls, Vancouver Island, Canadian Rockies, British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley, and Churchill. Tourism in Canada had been slowly recovering post-pandemic. Still, recent tensions and Canada’s stance on India have resulted in canceled and postponed trips to the country.
The uncertainty surrounding student visas and tourism has raised concerns among Indian students and travelers, awaiting further clarity from the respective governments involved.