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  #1  
Old 02-19-2008, 11:50 AM
gimme_GC2006 gimme_GC2006 is offline
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Default Illegal emigres defy the image - FASTEST GROWING SOURCE? IT'S INDIA

I came across this news about illegal immig. from India..does anyone know the validity of this?

http://www.mercurynews.com/valley/ci_8293975

Illegal emigres defy the image
FASTEST GROWING SOURCE? IT'S INDIA
By Mike Swift
Mercury News
Article Launched: 02/18/2008 01:30:47 AM PST

The Bay Area has a piece of the nation's fastest growing group of illegal immigrants. But don't assume you know who they are.

Turning stereotypes on their head, a recent federal analysis of unauthorized immigration says the most rapidly growing source of illegal immigration is India - the same country whose engineers and programmers help power Google and other Silicon Valley companies, whose doctors heal the Bay Area's sick, and whose entrepreneurs and venture capitalists have become a force on both sides of the international date line.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security estimates that there are 270,000 unauthorized Indian natives in the United States - a 125 percent jump since 2000, the largest percentage increase of any nation with more than 100,000 illegal immigrants in the United States.

The number of undocumented Indians is dwarfed by the estimated 6.6 million illegal residents from Mexico, according to the estimates from homeland security's Office of Immigration Statistics. Yet, considering the high level of education of many Indians, immigration experts say the federal report hints at a new phenomenon: a high-skilled undocumented workforce to go along with the nation's sizable numbers of low-skilled illegal workers.

If trends continue, within three years India would trail only Mexico, El Salvador and Guatemala as a source of illegal immigration. Another national immigration expert, Jeffrey S. Passel of the Pew Hispanic Center, estimates
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that the number of illegal Indians is even higher, at 400,000 people.

Virtually all entered the United States legally but violated the terms of their visas, say experts who study the nation's much maligned immigration system.

"How do you get in? You come across the border, or you arrive here with a visa," said Lindsay Lowell, policy director for the Institute for the Study of International Migration at Georgetown University. "Indians aren't going to be walking across the border like Mexicans."

Indians are among the most affluent ethnic groups in the United States, with a median household income that is 62 percent higher than the figure for all U.S. households.

Santa Clara County has the largest Indian-born population, and Alameda County ranks fifth, among the nation's 3,141 counties, according to 2006 census data. But there is no way to know what share of Bay Area Indian immigrants are illegal.

The Census Bureau does not ask people about their immigration status, and the Office of Immigration Statistics report did not provide state or local estimates. Of the 2.5 million people of Indian ancestry living in the United States, about 1 million are not U.S. citizens.

Federal officials calculated the number of illegal immigrants by using census estimates of the total number of immigrants from individual countries, compiling the total number of legal immigrants using federal immigration and naturalization records, and then subtracting the number of legal residents from the total immigrant population to determine the number of undocumented people.

It is certainly a minority of the local Indian community, however, and probably a very small one. Half the people of Indian ancestry living in Santa Clara County are already U.S. citizens, either by birth or naturalization, according to census data. Thousands of others are legal permanent residents, or they are here legally on student, tourist or work visas.

Asked about the number of illegal Indians in Silicon Valley, Banjit Singh, an Indian-born taxi driver waiting for a fare at Mineta San Jose International Airport, said, "Here, there is a little bit. But you go to another city or state, like L.A. or New York, there are many illegal people." Drivers need to show proof of citizenship or legal immigration status to get a taxi certificate.

But that doesn't mean the local number is insignificant. Local immigration lawyers say that particularly among Indians, the ups and downs of Silicon Valley's economy since 2001 are one reason why Indians have fallen out of legal status.

"Most are bachelors; the way they get here is they have a job," Gabriel Jack, a San Jose immigration lawyer, said of many of his Indian clients.

"They come here as professionals, most often in the H-1B program, and given the fluctuations of Silicon Valley, the business climate, these guys lose their jobs. They get laid off or they wager their hands on a start-up coming in," Jack said. "The problem with the H-1B program is, you can't have any significant time between jobs" without falling out of legal status.

Indians made up 44 percent of H-1B applicants in the 2005-06 fiscal year, five times the number from second-place China, according to federal data.

Because an immigrant's status can be dependent on the status of a spouse, the break-up of a marriage can also create an illegal immigrant.

Among Indians in the United States, "there has been a rapid increase in the divorce rate. If they are on an H-1, maybe the wife is protected and maybe she isn't," said Navneet Chugh, an immigration lawyer whose firm is based in Silicon Valley and Los Angeles. "The guy is an engineer at HP or Cisco, and he goes home on vacation, and his parents say, 'We have a girl for you.' And they get married, and they come here and have all kinds of problems."

Another source is relatives from India who arrive for a visit on a tourist visa and never go home.

"America is a very attractive country; everybody who comes here wants to stay," said Shah Peerally, a Silicon Valley immigration lawyer. "I can tell you right now, there are nearly 1 billion people in India, of which maybe 800 million want to come here."

The United States has deported slightly less than 500 Indians a year in recent years. In the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, "we have substantially expanded our effort to find visa violators," said Virginia Kice, a spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The government, she said, pursues cases based on public safety, rather than focusing on a specific country of origin.

Silicon Valley companies such as Google say they need to recruit the world's best talent to compete - and about one in 12 of Google's U.S. employees, roughly 900 people, are H-1B visa holders. "We have not seen major problems with prospective candidates being out of status," said Adam Kovacevich, a Google spokesman.

But immigration lawyers like Jack say there is such a backlog of people waiting for green cards - the wait is up to seven years for skilled workers from India as of this month - that an immigrant can still be waiting in line when even a six-year H-1B visa expires.

That can result in an illegal, highly educated, Indian immigrant, they said.

Unless Congress reforms the immigration system, "we are going to see this high-skilled, illegal workforce emerging," said Frank D. Bean, director of the Immigration Research Center at the University of California-Irvine. "From a narrow economic point of view, it might work. From a social justice, fairness point of view, it's a time bomb."
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Last edited by pappu; 02-22-2008 at 05:56 AM.
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  #2  
Old 02-19-2008, 12:21 PM
amitjoey amitjoey is offline
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270,000??. I do not believe that number. it could be more like 2700 or at the most: 27000.
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  #3  
Old 02-19-2008, 12:26 PM
amitjoey amitjoey is offline
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[quote]They come here as professionals, most often in the H-1B program, and given the fluctuations of Silicon Valley, the business climate, these guys lose their jobs. They get laid off or they wager their hands on a start-up coming in," Jack said. "The problem with the H-1B program is, you can't have any significant time between jobs" without falling out of legal status.

Indians made up 44 percent of H-1B applicants in the 2005-06 fiscal year, five times the number from second-place China, according to federal data.

Because an immigrant's status can be dependent on the status of a spouse, the break-up of a marriage can also create an illegal immigrant.

But immigration lawyers like Jack say there is such a backlog of people waiting for green cards - the wait is up to seven years for skilled workers from India as of this month - that an immigrant can still be waiting in line when even a six-year H-1B visa expires.

That can result in an illegal, highly educated, Indian immigrant, they said.."[/
QUOTE]


HOW UNTRUE............Do they know anything about extending a H1-Visa. H1-B's can and do maintain legal status even after their initial 6 years. How stupid of them to write such an article, without researching the facts.
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  #4  
Old 02-19-2008, 12:45 PM
amitjoey amitjoey is offline
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I just wrote to this reporter.

this was what I wrote, I urge all of you to write to him and ask him to rectify his article

Mr Mike
I am very hurt after reading your recent article dated 02/18/06 in Mercury news. http://www.mercurynews.com/valley/ci_8293975. The article quotes a series of false assumptions and just does not do justice to the facts, very poorly researched.
your quote "But immigration lawyers like Jack say there is such a backlog of people waiting for green cards - the wait is up to seven years for skilled workers from India as of this month - that an immigrant can still be waiting in line when even a six-year H-1B visa expires. That can result in an illegal, highly educated, Indian immigrant, they said" . Nobody turns automatically illegal. H1Bs can legally extend their status beyond 6 years and they do.
CASE IN POINT: myself: I have been in the wait for a green card for the last 5 years. I have been in the USA since August of 1998, and I have taken great pains, spent a lot of money to maintain my legal status. H1-B employees can extend their legal status by law beyond 6 years, if they met certain criteria and apply for legal extensions. I would not stay illegaly in the country without a job, I would rather go back home. H1B employees are highly skilled and high earning members of the society and they would rather move back home or move to a different country than become illegal.
Please rectify this error at your earliest, as this is insulting to the thousands of tax-paying, highly educated, professional and law-abiding foreigners here legally on a H1-B
Thanks
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  #5  
Old 02-19-2008, 01:10 PM
aachoo aachoo is offline
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Default DHS article on illegal immigration

Here is the link to an article from DHS which refers to the number of illegals by country:

http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/s...ll_pe_2006.pdf

Seems more and more like a hack job- it is a 2 year old report. If you want to get more upset read all the racist remarks by readers.

Almost seems like we should start a boycott SJ Mercury campaign.
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  #6  
Old 02-19-2008, 02:15 PM
needhelp! needhelp! is offline
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Default lets speak up again!

Thanks amitjoey, I used your text as a template base.

Mr. Swift,


Being an employer-sponsored Indian immigrant living in the US for nine years and currently waiting in the green-card queue, I was extremely disappointed to read your recent article dated 02/18/06 in Mercury news. http://www.mercurynews.com/valley/ci_8293975.

Not only am I concerned of the negative impact your article will have on how legal immigrants from India are perceived but particularly disturbing is the quote "there is such a backlog of people waiting for green cards - the wait is up to seven years for skilled workers from India as of this month - that an immigrant can still be waiting in line when even a six-year H-1B visa expires. That can result in an illegal, highly educated, Indian immigrant, they said" .

The H1B visa can be renewed beyond 6 years if one is waiting for adjudication of a permanent residency application. Legal immigrants go through a great deal of hassle, emotional stress and legal fees while waiting for their green card and maintaining their Legal status. It does not make sense for a highly skilled immigrant to turn illegal and work for low paying jobs when they can command a much higher standard of living anywhere in the world.

I request you to correct the error in your article.


The long 6-12 year waits in green card processing are proof of the broken legal immigration system. The country caps in green card numbers exacerbates the issue. Would you be willing to write an article that would represent the issues of one million legal immigrants and their families? These professionals have been paying taxes, contributing to US economy and technical competitiveness, doing everything right, and yet they are forced to remain in probationary limbo, for years on end, beholden to their employers and unable to grow in their careers. Immigration Voice (www.immigrationvoice.org) is a non-profit organization that is currently working to draw government attention to these issues. I strongly urge you to counter the negative publicity created by your article by doing a story that will represent the real issues faced by a majority of the legal immigrant population.

Sincerely

<NAME>
<PHONE NUMBER>

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Last edited by needhelp!; 02-20-2008 at 12:10 PM.
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  #7  
Old 02-19-2008, 02:35 PM
NKR NKR is offline
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[quote=amitjoey;224722]
Quote:
HOW UNTRUE............Do they know anything about extending a H1-Visa. H1-B's can and do maintain legal status even after their initial 6 years. How stupid of them to write such an article, without researching the facts.
I might be wrong, but it seems the reporter meant that people who are laid off will be out of status if they do not find another job in a short period and when that happens they tend to overstay. Also H1s cannot be extended after 6 year period when the visa holder has no pending GC application. So the reporter might be correct.

What could be wrong is the number of H1 guys who overstay?. As someone has said, you can lead a better life by going back to your country than by being here as an illegal immigrant.
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  #8  
Old 02-19-2008, 02:46 PM
kun kun is offline
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Fastest growing <> Largest number

If current immigrants = 1 and increase to 2, then it has doubled. This statistic does not mean much.
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  #9  
Old 02-19-2008, 03:15 PM
GCwaitforever GCwaitforever is offline
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Thumbs down

Quote:
Originally Posted by NKR View Post

I might be wrong, but it seems the reporter meant that people who are laid off will be out of status if they do not find another job in a short period and when that happens they tend to overstay. Also H1s cannot be extended after 6 year period when the visa holder has no pending GC application. So the reporter might be correct.

What could be wrong is the number of H1 guys who overstay?. As someone has said, you can lead a better life by going back to your country than by being here as an illegal immigrant.
You must be kidding. The article insinuates something sinister by quoting some lawyer. This is called Yellow journalism.

Last edited by GCwaitforever; 02-19-2008 at 03:47 PM. Reason: Clarification.
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  #10  
Old 02-19-2008, 03:17 PM
GCwaitforever GCwaitforever is offline
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Default

Here is the reply to the sucker to mend his ways.

To: mswift@mercurynews.com
Subject: RE: H-1Bs and illegal immigration
Date: Tue, 19 Feb 2008 10:57:50 -0500

> But immigration lawyers like Jack say there is such a backlog of people
> waiting for green cards - the wait is up to seven years for skilled workers
> from India as of this month - that an immigrant can still be waiting in
> line when even a six-year H-1B visa expires.
>
> That can result in an illegal, highly educated, Indian immigrant, they
> said.

You should learn to investigate further and write news. As a journalist, you are not doing your job. It is a disgrace, when journalists pander to producing sensational news without any real content and just write utter lies.

Just because someone stays beyond six years of H-1B, he/she does not become illegal immigrant. If a lawyer told you so, he/she does not know head/tail of immigration laws.

The H-1B VISA can be extended as long as there is a Green card petition going on, even after six years period. Also people get a work permit after applying for Green card if they do not want to extend their H-1B. Applying for Green card itself protects people from illegal status.

Please write responsibly as a journalist. I expect you to do a good job next time.

Regards,
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  #11  
Old 02-19-2008, 03:20 PM
Dhundhun Dhundhun is offline
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by aachoo View Post
Here is the link to an article from DHS which refers to the number of illegals by country:

http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/s...ll_pe_2006.pdf
I read this document carefully, which is coming from Department of Homeland Security. They have certain definition of illigal immigrants. Even going by that definitions, there may be computing errors.

Do you think, I-94 not being returned counted? I came to USA in 2000, never went out so I have 1+1+1+1=4 I-94 in my passport.
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  #12  
Old 02-19-2008, 03:33 PM
amitjoey amitjoey is offline
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by needhelp! View Post
Thanks amitjoey, I used your text as a template base.

Mr. Swift,


Being an employer-sponsored Indian immigrant living in the US for nine years and currently waiting in the green-card queue, I was extremely disappointed to read your recent article dated 02/18/06 in Mercury news. http://www.mercurynews.com/valley/ci_8293975.

Not only am I concerned of the negative impact your article will have on how legal immigrants from India are perceived but particularly disturbing is the quote "there is such a backlog of people waiting for green cards - the wait is up to seven years for skilled workers from India as of this month - that an immigrant can still be waiting in line when even a six-year H-1B visa expires. That can result in an illegal, highly educated, Indian immigrant, they said" .

The H1B visa can be renewed beyond 6 years if one is waiting for adjudication of a permanent residency application. Legal immigrants go through a great deal of hassle, emotional stress and legal fees while waiting for their green card and maintaining their Legal status. It does not make sense for a highly skilled immigrant to turn illegal and work for low paying jobs when they can command a much higher standard of living anywhere in the world.

I request you to correct the error in your article.


The long 6-12 year waits in green card processing are proof of the broken legal immigration system. The country caps in green card numbers exacerbates the issue. Would you be willing to write an article that would represent the issues of one million legal immigrants and their families? These professionals have been paying taxes, contributing to US economy and technical competitiveness, doing everything right, and yet they are forced to remain in probationary limbo, for years on end, beholden to their employers and unable to grow in their careers. Immigration Voice (www.immigrationvoice.org) is a non-profit organization that is currently working to draw government attention to these issues. I strongly urge you to counter the negative publicity created by your article by doing a story that will represent the real issues faced by a majority of the legal immigrant population.

Sincerely
good job, needhelp!. very well written.
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  #13  
Old 02-19-2008, 03:41 PM
grupak grupak is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amitjoey View Post
good job, needhelp!. very well written.
amitjoey, needhelp, great job.

I am going to email my letter to the Mike Swift
tonight.
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  #14  
Old 02-19-2008, 03:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dhundhun View Post
I read this document carefully, which is coming from Department of Homeland Security. They have certain definition of illigal immigrants. Even going by that definitions, there may be computing errors.

Do you think, I-94 not being returned counted? I came to USA in 2000, never went out so I have 1+1+1+1=4 I-94 in my passport.
Most likely all yours have the same number.
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  #15  
Old 02-19-2008, 04:12 PM
tnite tnite is offline
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There was an article in Houston Chron couple of months back about this. Looks like somebody is digging up stuff(or maybe making up stuff to some extent) to show us in bad light.
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Labor RIR : Mar 25,2005
I485/I765/I131 RD : July 2, 2007
I485/I765/I131 ND : Sep 8, 2007
I485 RFE 09/08/2008 I20,MC,OPT EAD Replied 09/19/2008

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