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US tech firms get more H-1B visas in FY19

Seven US companies among top 10 recipients; TCS, Cognizant and TechM were others in the list. The top ten companies accounted for 12% of the 88324 H-1B visas issued in fiscal 2019.

Updated: Nov 05, 2019, 08.14 AM IST
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India’s IT services giant Tata Consultancy Services, the third largest recipient of initial or fresh H-1B visas in the year.
Bengaluru | Pune: Seven US technology firms including Google, Amazon, Apple and Facebook were among the top ten recipients of fresh H-1B visas in fiscal year 2019, as the President Donald Trump administration continued its policy of favouring American firms to hire computer science professionals from countries such as India on short term work permits.

India’s IT services giant Tata Consultancy Services, the third largest recipient of initial or fresh H-1B visas in the year, USheadquartered Cognizant, which follows the offshore model of Indian IT services firms and smaller rival Tech Mahindra were the other firms in the list, according to new data available with the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

The top ten companies accounted for 12% of the 88324 H-1B visas issued in fiscal 2019.

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USCIS is the American agency to oversee immigration in the country. It follows the October to September financial year. The US issues 85,000 H-1B visas a year, of which about 70% is awarded to Indian nationals who could be employed by Indian IT services exporters or American technology corporations.

“We noticed that in the award of the visas, companies that are placing candidates at third party sites are automatically held to suspicion. The net effect of this discrimination against companies providing consulting services is that Indian companies are disproportionately affected,” said Rajiv S Khanna, managing attorney at law firm Immigration. com.

USCIS data showed that Google received 2,111 H-1B visas, followed by Amazon with 1,612 and Tata Consultancy Services with 1,367 work permits. Facebook (1,132) and Apple (991) were among the top five in the list.

“We are seeing that technology product companies are getting more preference in approvals for initial H-1B petitions and getting a higher share of such visas,” a senior executive at Nasscom, the software lobby said. “The tech services companies have started accepting that the American tech firms and product focused companies are getting an edge”. The person did not want to be named.

While the American technology companies received higher number of fresh H-1B visas in 2019; Indian and India-centric tech services companies have seen “alarming” rate of rejection for their initial petitions filed before the US administration.
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