New Delhi [India], Dec.12 (ANI): According to the UK Office for National Statistics' regular report, visas granted to Indian nationals in the year to September 2017 stood at 517,000 - a nine percent increase on the previous year.
Within this number, visit visas increased by 11 percent to 427,000 and work visas remained steady at 53,000 - meaning that Indians still get more work visas for employment in the UK than all other nationalities combined.
The largest increase however was seen in the Tier 4 Student visa category. In the last year, over 14,000 student visas were issued to Indian nationals, an increase of 27 percent compared with the previous 12 months. In addition to this, over 5,000 Indians came for short-term study in the UK during the same period. This is the third successive quarter that student visa numbers have increased.
Britain's High Commissioner to India, Sir Dominic Asquith,said, "It is an exciting time for the UK-India relationship. Prime Minister Modi has often talked about the living bridge that exists between India and other countries in the world. These statistics show that India's bridge with the United Kingdom is as strong as ever.
"I particularly welcome the sharp increase in Indian students choosing to take advantage of the UK's world-beating higher education. Our visa service for Indians is as good as any other on offer. Some 90 percent of applicants receive a visa and 99% of those are processed within our target time of 15 working days.
"I want more Indians to see the UK as their partner country, whether for business, tourism, study or work. Visits to India last week by the Mayor of London and the Deputy First Minister of Scotland show the depth of interest in working with India."
The figures quoted above are for the year from September 2016 to September 2017 - and are compared with the previous 12 months (September 2015 to September 2016).
The source for this data is the Office for National Statistics Quarterly Update - available online here. (ANI)