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Bush against scrapping H-1B plan
September 24, 2003 13:15 IST
Observing that the H-1B visa programme is "important" to the United States, President George W Bush has said that he is opposed to efforts to scrap the programme, under which thousands of Indian information technology experts are working in the US.
"The H-1B programme is important to the US. I understand the current cap is approximately 200,000, and I will seek to maintain a strong H-1B programme," Bush was quoted as saying by the India Abroad newspaper in New York.
The President's comments came during an interaction with Indian-Americans on the occasion of a Bush-Cheney fund-raiser reception recently.
When asked about H-1B bills on the floor of the House of Representatives, especially the Resolution 2688 moved by Republican Congressman Thomas Tancredo seeking to terminate the H-1B programme, Bush said, "Tancredo and me are at opposite ends of the pole. I do not support Congressman Tancredo's bill against H-1Bs."
Paresh Shah, a participant, raised the issue with Bush on behalf of an eight-member Indian delegation at Jackson, Mississippi, at the reception attended by top contributors who donated $10,000 each.