December 3, 2023

Immigration Green Card

Immigration Is Good For You

Will the green card recapture help Indians in backlog?

2 min read

For the past few weeks, there has been a lot of talk about the Green Card Recapture recommendation being sent to the White House. The President’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders’ is reported to have recently approved draft recommendations for recapture of green card visas.

As a response to any new development that seems to provide some relief to the decades-long green card backlog thousands of Indians are stuck in, this news generates some interest.

However, whether or not this recommendation would actually go on to bring any change to the existing scenario seems like a long shot. Firstly, the presidential commission only suggests a plan to the White House. For a plan to reach anywhere near reality, the White House has to not only accept it but also implement it.

Those who have been following the green card backlog updates would know that while this may sound like a great plan when executed, it is not the first time that this suggestion has been sent forth.

READ: Indian American lawmakers call for immigration reform to reduce green card backlog (December 21, 2022)

The recommendation by the President’s advisory commission suggests that currently more than 2,30,000 unused green cards in the family as well as employment categories could be recaptured or reused. The unused green cards are from the period of 1992 to 2022.

The suggestion is to reuse a portion of these cards every fiscal year so that families who have been waiting for a green card for years and have no hopes of obtaining permanent residency can have a chance at fulfilling their residency dreams in the United States.

However, some of those who are in the backlog aren’t as amused by the news and the brouhaha around it. Malvika Shah, an H-1B visa holder in the Greater Houston area says, “Every few months, there comes a news which sounds as if the green card backlog is about to end and all those waiting for their permanent residency will be handed over the coveted card soon. It’s sad that people do not realize that there are many intricacies involved and just a suggestion or proposal won’t change anything.”

READ: Bill to reduce massive green card backlog introduced in Congress (April 11, 2022)

Niren Singh, an IT professional who is on H-1B, says, “My priority date has not even yet started. I am one of those who have given up on the hope that green cards would be a reality for me in the near future so news such as these are not new to me. We will talk when we have something concrete. Until then, these are just feel-good news which aren’t yet changing things on the surface.”


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