Re-open VFS in India for Canada and Resume Operations

Re-open VFS in India for Canada and Resume Operations

0 have signed. Let’s get to 1,000!
At 1,000 signatures, this petition is more likely to be featured in recommendations!
Amer Patel started this petition to Macro E. L. Mendicino (Minister of immigration Canada) and

Petition to the Honorable Marco E.L. Mendicino, Minister of Immigration and Nadir Patel, High Commissioner of Canada in India

It has been seven months since the Visa Application Centres (VFS) for Canada have been closed in India. Seven months since any applicant from India received a Passport Request in order to get their visa, even if their application was approved months ago. The reason we are specifically bringing to light VFS in India is because VFS Global is operating for most other countries here, but for Canada they remain closed. Moreover, applicants from all other countries are now starting to see movement in their applications and are also getting passport requests, adapting to the current situation and learning to work around it. Whereas, for India, the High Commission of Canada announced on 30th September 2020 that VFS would remain closed for the month of October.

While we understand the impact of the pandemic on visa processes all over the world and appreciate that the government is doing everything to keep Canadians safe, we also want to bring your attention:

1. to the families that have been forced to stay apart during a global crisis, the Spousal Sponsorship process is stressful and draining as it is, without the added stress of not knowing when VFS will resume services in order to process applications.
2. to all the students who have invested so much money for their higher education but have no certainty of when they will get their visa and then be able to attend their classes.
3. to the PR applicants under the Express Entry system waiting for passport requests, having put their lives on hold and not knowing when they will be able to start their lives in Canada.

On 8th June 2020, it was announced that immediate family members (which includes spouses) of Canadian citizens and PR holders would be exempt from the travel restrictions in Canada and applications from exempt people would be prioritized. A lot of us applied for Temporary Resident Visas (TRV) hoping to be reunited with our spouses. However, due to VFS being closed, only those who had their PRs or TRVs before the onset of the pandemic could travel to be with their spouses. It is now October and we are still being forced to be apart despite claims that reuniting families is a priority.

If border closure and health concerns are the only reason for VFS in India not resuming services, we would like to put forth the following:
- Allow VFS to issue passport requests for those who are exempt from the travel restrictions or let the High Commission in New Delhi issue passport requests. The passports can be sent to them and back to the applicant via courier, as is being done in a few other countries. This allows for processing of visas without anyone having to physically go to VFS.

Health and safety measures are already in place, which would not allow people to travel to Canada without a negative Covid-19 test report and the mandatory 14 day quarantine on arrival will ensure that safety is maintained. Keeping VFS closed and forcing families to stay away from each other is not a solution; being with family is everything. Keeping visa applicants in the dark about their applications has already led to a rise in anxiety levels and depression for them. Keeping these in mind, we humbly request you to start VFS operations and let families reunite during this difficult period.

0 have signed. Let’s get to 1,000!
At 1,000 signatures, this petition is more likely to be featured in recommendations!