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UK hikes visa fees for Indians from April 1

NoC not needed

The government has done away with the need of obtaining No Objection Certificate from the HRD ministry for foreign students to get a visa, the Rajya Sabha was informed.

London, March 8
The UK yesterday announced a steep increase in its visa fees for students, visitors and those wishing to settle down here from India from April 1 this year.

The basic visitor visa fee has been increased from 50 pounds (Rs 4,250 approx) to 63 pounds, student visa from 85 pounds to 99 pounds, Long Term Visa (including Work Permit and Highly Skilled Migrant Programme Visa) from 85 to 200 pounds and settlement Visa from 260 to 500 pounds.

Announcing this, Glyn Williams, Director, Business Development, UK-visas and Simon Lovett, Programme Manager for Customer and Communications told PTI the visa fees have been increased to cover the increasing maintenance cost and to provide better service to the visa aspirants.

The transit visa fee would increase from 30 pounds to 44 pounds from April 1. Williams said the demand has been increasing constantly.

As many as 19,553 students from India came to the UK last year a 24 per cent increase over the previous year. Overall 3,66,170 visitors from India visited the UK in 2006 as against 144,931 visitors from China.

Explaining the Visitor Visa fee increase, Williams said so far the applicant in India for a visitor visa had to pay 5.51 pounds separately to the VFS, the agency to whom the work has been outsourced. The new fee of 63 pounds would include the VFS handling fee also. PTI

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