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Applying for a US visa?

November 24, 2005

You plan to go the US for further studies or for a job. You could also be planning to migrate to the US.

As a result, you may have many questions about how easy or difficult it is to secure a visa.

US visa expert Dr Arun Vakil chatted with Get Ahead readers on November 23 and answered queries related to application procedures, etc.

Dr Arun Vakil has an MBA from the University of California, USA, and a PhD from the University of Wyoming, USA. He is an expert on US visa regulations. He was associated with the US consulate in Mumbai as an economist from 1974 to 1977.

Dr Vakil conducts orientation courses for students going to the US; these courses are organised by the United States Education Foundation in India and the Indo-American Society. He also lectures on US visas and immigration laws.

Dr Vakil wrote the book Gateway To America, in 1984.

Here is the transcript:

Part II:
'US visa cap has not yet increased'

 Dr Arun Vakil: Hi everybody. Glad to be back at rediff and chat with promising and enterprising youth of India.

oram: Can an H1-B visa be cancelled?

Dr Arun Vakil: If immigration authorities find any fraud in getting such a visa, it would be cancelled.

sanket: hi,i m in US n has the F-1 from here's IRS, if i come to INDIA than I have to stand in interview for F-1 again, cuz i came to US on B-1(visitor visa)n thn transfered to F-1. i studied here in HS n now in college w/ good grades n also good credits. so wht r my chances of approvel from india's interview. or i should jus wait till i finish my college.

Dr Arun Vakil: If you have changed your status to F-1 from B-1 legally, were not out of status any time and have no fraud registered against your name; you should not have any problem.

The second point is how important it is for you to go to India before you complete your studies. That is your choice.

shiva: Dear Sir,I am a diploma holder in mechanical engineering and have been working in field of GIS for past 10 years.want to know whether the diploma+10 years work experience can have chances of getting a job in similar field in US.

Dr Arun Vakil: You have to locate an employer who would be interested in your work and capability. The best thing is to visit the US and explore.

satya: Can I take my mother to US if i get a H1Visa as she is completely depended on me. I lost myfather recently. I am married.

Dr Arun Vakil: You can take your own family -- spouse and children as dependents under H-4. Mother can visit on B-2.

Divakar: How is the job oppurtunities for Diploma holders in USA.
Dr Arun Vakil: Degree has more value than diploma. However, in certain skill-oriented occupation where the degree programme is unavailable, a diploma can do.

abhijit: I am working in a national level NGO as assistant engineer and I want to apply for MS &Phd program in US university. so what is the possibility of getting a visa. Is it easy as I am working in devlopmental field.

Dr Arun Vakil: Just because you are working in a developmental field does not guarantee you an easy visa. The US Consul will go by the existing rules.

Vini: Hello, Please tell me why is US Visa filing procedure being made so complicated, do consulate considers emergency cases? Thanks.

Dr Arun Vakil: Since the terrorist attack of 9/11, procedures have been tightened by the US authorities for security and safety. Obtaining a visa has thus become an examination by itself. The consulate does consider emergency cases relating to accidents and deaths only.

ankur: hi doctor, i am in last year of computer science.i wana go to us for doing MS my btech aggregate is much score in need in gre to get admission.

Dr Arun Vakil: Each university where you apply has different entrance test score requirement. Check with the university of your choice for reply to this question.

Indian: What does 221g mean?

Dr Arun Vakil: 221g means visa is not given due to insufficient documents. The visa officer would want more details from you and, when available, you could go again. No new fees have to be paid in this case.

balkrishna: hello Sir!I m a Chartered Accountant and i want to know whether there is a scope for a Chartered Accountant to get a job in USA if yes in which field they can get the job.

Dr Arun Vakil: CAs are in demand in the US but you need to know US style of accounting. You should be conversant with CPA approach. All businesses look for competent CAs.

zeeshan: dear sir , i am an undergraduate applying for US VISA - as i read from US EMBASSY Webiste , that i am suppose to leave that sort of impression on the person who is taking my interview such that he is convinced that i will come back to india , so in which all ways can i leave such impressions ? can u suggest some imortant points ? lastly is it possible to purchase to book GATEWAY TO US online ?

Dr Arun Vakil: The US visa officer can be convinced by you proving your financial ties, including that of your parents, in India wherein you have a claim. This shows that you will not leave such an opportunity and run away to the US. You must put together your liquid and fixed assets and show your net worth to the visa officer.

The book GATEWAY TO AMERICA is only available at the INDO AMERICAN SOCIETY. Contact A new edition is due in early 2006.

preeti: if we want to study in US... do we need F1 Visa?

Dr Arun Vakil: Yes. F-1 is YOUR visa to go for higher studies in the US.

Indian: Mr vakil,My salary on the h1-b paper is not consistent with the offer letter.In such situation what should be my anwser at the time of Interview?

Dr Arun Vakil: You must get a corrective letter from your prospective employer and produce this along with the two documents you referred to. It is important that uniformity is maintained, else your application may be delayed.

dheeraj: i am doing diamond grading course from Surat, i want to join Gia California next year, any specific requirements

Dr Arun Vakil: Check with Gia California for their needs. Thereafter you have to approach the US Consulate for your visa. Mostly it would be M visa.

kk: sir i am working a software company in chennai nearly 10 years i am having a diploma (3 yrs) after my 10 th. Whether i will get a H1B visa

Dr Arun Vakil: What is important is to get an employer who will file for you. Your experience stands a good chance
but you should get someone to employ you. Visit for details.

techperk1: suppose my total expense for my studies in the US is around 40,000 dollars and my first year expense is around 30,000 dollars.. Should I show the 30,000 dollars as liquid cash in my bank account? Can it be a mixture of Fixed deposit (like fixed depoists in Post office schemes) and Savings account money?

Dr Arun Vakil: Good question. You should have liquid assets (bank account, FDs, shares, PPF etc) to cover $ 40,000. There is no law that you have to show majority of liquid assets in cash only.

Naresh: why is mr.vakil not replying on the left side of this chat ? is there a problem ?? - Naresh

Dr Arun Vakil: There are many, many questions. I am replying. Be patient.

viv1: i have applied for buisness visa. i am from north india n just month back i shifted to bangalore. i applied to delhi consulate. does it create a problem? also is training allowed in buisness visa?

Dr Arun Vakil: You need to alert the US Embassy in Delhi and the American consulate in Chennai about your change of location and approach the Chennai consulate accordingly.

Chennai has the longest waiting period for appointments and your application will definitely be delayed. Training is allowed on a business visa as long as it does not get you income except allowance for maintenance.

Rupesh: Dear Dr Arun, I have done B.Tech in Electrical & Electronics Engineering and have about nearly 2 years of work experience. I have plans to do MBA in Clemson University, USA. Kindly advise me what to do in order to secure a student visa to apply for the first batch of 2006 at Clemson.

Dr Arun Vakil: Visit for relevant information.

rawal_puneet: Hi Dr. Arun,I am Puneet working right now in China in Garment Processing.I want to ask you that do we have chances for this field, If yes, can I aply visa here from China.If yes, what would be the Procedure?Hope for yr postitve reply on this.Thnx and Best regards,Puneet.

Dr Arun Vakil: You have to locate a willing employer in garment processing in the US. Contact such employers through the Internet, Commercial Wings of Indian Consulates and Chambers of Commerce. If you can find someone like that who takes interest in you and files H1B for you, your work may be done.

shuk: I am in frankfurt and will start my new job inCarolina. Is it possible to get the VISA in Frankfurt or I should apply from INDIA?

Dr Arun Vakil: You can try at US Consulate, Frankfurt. If they are convinced about the genuinity of your case, you will get the visa or else you will have to get back to India. They will tell you.

vivek:  I returned to India in 8/2004 and I had valid H1B visa from 1/2000 to 7/2005. When can I apply for fresh H1B visa?

Dr Arun Vakil: You are eligible to get a fresh H-1B one year after your return.

Paras: I am an IT professional wanting to migrate to the US. Can you please help as to how I can proceed

Dr Arun Vakil: You cannot migrate just like that because you are IT professional. The first step is to get H-1B visa through an employer who has to file for you from the US. Once you go there, you can seek help of your employer to file for your Green Card (Immigration) in due course. Also visit for details.

nmo70: if i am going for businesss purpose, what could be the procedure & documents required...Thanks

Dr Arun Vakil: Read my book Gateway To America for all the procedures and documents required. Call Shweta on 022-56316898 for a copy.

pa: I work in Automobile sector as Car Designer. How can I apply compnies in US, as they prefer people with work permit only.

Dr Arun Vakil: In a specialised field such as yours, visit the US as visitor, explore opportunities with possible employers and one of them can file for you for H-1B when the visa is available.

USAspirant: I am BA Graduate and having 5+ years in software, and having two years HDSE Diploma in software engineering , but I haven't completed my +2 ( Having BA Degree)…Can I apply for US H1B Visa.

Dr Arun Vakil: H-1B visa cannot be applied by you in a strict sense. An employer has to petition this from the US and this visa is subject to quota. Next quota begins only in October 1, 2006; applications of which will be received effective April 1, 2006.

h1b_usa: Hi,Will it be a problem during Visa stamping if my first name and last name are interchanged in passport. (provided I ensure that it will remained in the same way in all documents H1b papers, DS156,157) ..My educational records have only the initials...Thanks!

Dr Arun Vakil: Take whatever documents you have to prove that although your name is written differently in different documents, you are the same person. That should satisfy the Consul.

Vicky: Vicky says, Hi Arun does the new cap increase of H1-B will help those who couldnt apply due to cap reach this year.

Dr Arun Vakil: The new cap increase you read in newspapers is only a proposal. It has not become a law yet as debate is going on. If it becomes a law and cap is increased, then definitely it will be beneficial to Indian IT professionals.

Bidyut: What types of documents should I carry for F1 Visa Interview.

Dr Arun Vakil: Go to and click on F-1 visa which will give you all the details.

Part II: 'US visa cap has not yet increased'


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Number of User Comments: 36

Sub: for H1b visa

Dear sir Presently i am working 3d animator in Data Quest Entertaintment Hydrabad. i have 2d working experience 4 year in Toons animation pvt ltd ...

Posted by sreekumar s

Sub: Does F1 Rejection leads to H1B rejection?

Hi, Iam,Ravi and I had F1 rejection for United States in 2005-Dec.Does this effect on H1B visa?Inawait of your quick response. Have a nice time...... ...

Posted by Ravi Kumar Reddy

Sub: HIB

Hi, I Got my H1B visa can i work here for oter company also on part time . Also my wife got H4 visa can ...

Posted by Rinku

Sub: For H-1B visa what is the minimum yrs exp one should have and what needs to be kept in mind while preparing the CV .

When applying for a H-1B visa , is there any special international format for the cv and what needs to be kept in mind while ...

Posted by Shelji

Sub: how to apply for a visa

I am aself employed proffessional and want to go usa for my buisness expansion regarding in the granite field.I want to know the procedures,rules.Please help ...

Posted by annarao


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