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India-canada Differences Force Students To Try Out Alternatives | – Times of India

Chandigarh: With tensions escalating between India and Canada, a sense of insecurity has gripped those who have applied for Canadian study visas, with some even looking for possible alternatives.
“I had applied to a university in Vancouver and have already paid around Rs 12-13,000. Now, I’m exploring alternative options like Australia, as I fear the Canadian embassy may reject my student visa,” said one of the students. “Even if they approve my visa, my parents are too worried to send me there now due to safety concerns,” she added.
Gurpreet Singh, an education consultant based in Mohali, said, “Some are planning to have options in Australia as well. Not only the current issue, but financial crisis and housing problems are also contributing factors.”
Canada is a top choice among youngsters from the region due to its flexible education policies, abundant work opportunities, easier post-graduation immigration avenues, and the substantial Punjabi population with political influence. The route of first studying in Canada and then attaining permanent resident status is highly sought after. But the worsening of ties between the two countries is impacting not only students but their parents too.
Shivani, a student, said, “My parents are so anxious that they spoke to my consultant assisting me in gaining admission to a Canadian college. I have already invested around Rs 18 lakh and secured admission for my intake, but I am anxious about potential delays. Plus, I don’t have any backup options now.”
Students aspiring to pursue education in Canada typically set their sights on three main admission intakes: fall (September), winter (January), and summer (May). International institutions adhere to designated admission cycles, commonly known as intakes. With the September intake nearing completion, sources said they are optimistic that the issue is likely to be resolved soon and those who got their visas must not worry.
Meet Jatana, an educational consultant and owner of immigration firm in Chandigarh, said, “Even though Canada has not officially issued a suspension notice, my students are growing worried. However, I believe it’s just a temporary phase. Our students are a significant asset for Canada, so I am optimistic .”
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Parents, kin of students and workers in Canada worried
The strained relations between India and Canada have raised concerns among the families of Indian students, particularly Sikhs, who have a significant presence in Canada. The families are worried about the future of their loved ones studying in Canada and are closely monitoring the situation. However, immigration consultants state that there is currently no ban on visas for students and work permit applicants, and the Canadian embassies are still processing applications. The tensions have also led some students to consider universities in the USA, UK, and Australia as alternatives to Canada.
Students in Gujarat anxious about winter intake at Canadian varsities
The ongoing diplomatic strain between India and Canada is causing concern among Indian students planning to study in Canada. Many students have deferred their admissions, hoping for a resolution to the issue by the next admission cycle in December-January. The situation is also affecting Canadian brands in India and has drawn objections from the Hindu community in Canada. However, experts believe that the impact on students is less likely and that the current fall intake admissions are already settled.
Students explore deferments, alternatives to Canada courses
The recent strain in Indo-Canadian diplomatic ties may impact the number of Indian students choosing to study in Canada. Experts suggest that safety concerns and potential hate crimes in Canada could lead students to consider alternative countries for higher education. While the shift in preferences is not significant yet, students with offers are seeking advice on deferments and exploring other options. The United States and the United Kingdom are emerging as preferred alternatives, followed by Australia, France, Germany, and Ireland. Concerns of discrimination and racial backlash are causing stress among students already in Canada.

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