The number of Indian KU students has dropped by 60 per cent since 2008, according to the university’s student profiles.
The decrease is proving the business secretary’s statement that the UK is struggling to welcome Indian Students.
Vaibhav Gupta, an Indian KU student, said: “Every time I go to immigration control after returning to the UK from whichever country, I am asked the same question: ‘Do you intend to stay here permanently?'”
In 2012, the government removed the after-study work visa, which previously allowed students to stay in the UK for two years after their studies.
If non-EU students want to stay in the UK, they now have to switch to a different immigration status, which requires them to find a job that pays at least £20,000 within four months.
“For people like me, whose intentions are clean and clear, I want there to be a sort of special visa doe us,” Gupta said. “I want to raise this issue to the British government, because not all of us are here with the intention of nicking jobs or trying to settle down here.”
More than 50 per cent of overseas students do not feel welcomed in the UK, a survey conducted by YouthSight for Regent’s University London showed. The survey also revealed about 40 per cent of international students mostly hang out with students from their home country.
Business secretary Vince Cable talked about the decrease in Indian students at the Global Universities Summit in Westminster. He explained that non-EU students are considered immigrants because of international laws.
Sanam Arora, the president of the National Indian Students’ Union, said: “Previously, the UK had academic excellence as a primary selling point, but international students don’t only look at the academic anymore.”
She said there had been a 25 per cent decline in Indian Students studying in the UK over the last couple of years and she thinks the main reason is the removal of the post-study work visa.
“Now Indian students look at the USA, Canada and Australia as these countries offer the possibility of working there for a while as well,” Arora explained.
Indian students used to be the biggest group of non-UK students at KU for years, but now their number falls third, after Norwegian and Greek students.