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‘Explore other countries’: Experts advise as Canada partially halts visa services

*Each year, numerous Indian students set their sights on Canada as their preferred destination for international education. However, recent strains in the India-Canada relationship have raised concerns and anxiety among students planning to pursue their education in Canada.*


*The decision by the Canadian government to suspend in-person visa services at visa offices in Bengaluru, Mumbai, and Chandigarh, leaving only the New Delhi office operational, has left prospective students in a state of confusion. Students who had dreams of studying in Canada now face uncertainty due to ongoing political tensions.*


*Nandini Shah, who was about to join Seneca College in Ontario, Canada for the January intake, shared her experience: “I had met all the academic requirements, and everything was falling into place until political tensions between India and Canada escalated. Many international students have been protesting about inflation and the housing crisis in Canada. My parents, equally concerned, decided not to send me to Canada and explore other study destinations. Going to Canada had always been my plan, and a substantial investment had been made, but it didn’t materialize.”*


*However, not all students have been deterred by recent developments. Rohan Aggarwal from Chandigarh, who is set to join the Schulich School of Business at York University in January 2024, said, “Initially, I was surprised by the sudden developments and concerned about their impact on my immigration status and educational plans. I sought reassurance by discussing the matter with my university’s immigration team, and they provided some assurance that this move by the Canadian government shouldn’t pose a significant problem.”*


*Experts in the field of studying abroad are reassuring prospective students that the Canadian authorities’ announcement doesn’t signify a denial of student visas to Indian students. Amit Singh, founder of UniScholars, clarified that it indicates a delay in the visa process, advising students to consider this when applying for a Canadian study visa.*


*Study abroad experts stress the importance of staying informed and recommend students to stay in touch with their chosen university representatives. Vibha Kagzi, founder and CEO of, suggests that students stay updated with the latest information and guidelines from Canadian authorities and maintain communication with their educational institutions to ensure their safety and well-being.*


*While the diplomatic tension between India and Canada causes concern, experts advise students to remain calm, avoid making premature conclusions, and disregard unverified reports. Many experts propose a “wait and watch” approach, encouraging students to explore study destinations in other English-speaking countries known for their high-quality education and post-study work opportunities.*


*For students who have temporarily deferred their plans, experts recommend considering bridge courses or online programs to ensure they stay on track with their educational journey. Abhijit Zaveri, founder and director of Career Mosaic, suggests that enrolling in such courses during this transitional period can help students maintain their educational progress.*

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