Washington, September 17
Describing the H-1B visa programme as a form of “indentured servitude”, Indian-American Republican presidential aspirant Vivek Ramaswamy has vowed to gut the lottery-based system and replace it with meritocratic admission if he wins the race to the White House in 2024.
The H-1B visa, much sought-after among Indian IT professionals, is a non-immigrant visa that allows US companies to employ foreign workers in speciality occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise. Technology companies depend on it to hire tens of thousands of employees each year from countries like India and China. Ramaswamy himself has used the H-1B visa programme 29 times.
His ex-firm used it 29 times: report
- From 2018 through 2023, the US approved 29 applications for Ramaswamy’s former company, Roivant Sciences, to hire employees under H-1B visas, mentioned a report.
- Yet, the H-1B system is bad for everyone involved, the 38-year-old has said.
From 2018 through 2023, US Citizenship and Immigration Services approved 29 applications for Ramaswamy’s former company, Roivant Sciences, to hire employees under H-1B visas, the Politico reported. Yet, the H-1B system is “bad for everyone involved,” the 38-year-old biotech entrepreneur was quoted as saying by Politico.
“The lottery system needs to be replaced by actual meritocratic admission. It’s a form of indentured servitude that only accrues to the benefit of the company that sponsored an H-1B immigrant. I’ll gut it,” Ramaswamy said in a statement, adding that the United States needs to eliminate chain-based migration.
“The people who come as family members are not the meritocratic immigrants who make skills-based contributions to this country.” Ramaswamy stepped down as chief executive officer of Roivant in February 2021 but remained the chair of the company’s board of directors until February this year when he announced his presidential campaign.
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