Environmental Overview – Chandigarh

Earlier this year I published a partial reproduction of the Environmental Overview of the immigration functions at the Canadian Consulate in Chandigargh current to 2012.  The post was quite popular, and the following is a summary of the most recent Environmental Overview of the immigration functions at the Canadian Consulate in Chandigarh (the “Environmental Overview”).  The Environmental Overview was prepared as part of the Citizenship and Immigration Canada 2014-2015 planning exercise, and is current as of January 2014.

Areas in blockquote are direct passages from the Environmental Overview.

Environment

The Canadian Consulate in Chandigarh (“CIC Chandigarh“) provides temporary residence processing in northwest India.

Chandigarh is a non-immigrant processing office. However in 2013 we processed some family class files in order to assist Delhi with their targets and to provide a learning experience for officers in Chandigarh. Over 400 family class applications were interviewed and processed to conclusion in 2013.

SuperVisas continue to account for 15% of our total visitor intake.

Systemic fraud necessitates a careful review of applications in all lines of business.

Interestingly, CIC Chandigarh has been active in meeting with Punjab government officials to provide input on the new Punjab Prevention of Human Smuggling Act, a law which provides a registration system for those performing immigration consultant services and provides stiff penalties for those who operate without being registered or who commit fraud.

Two quality assurance exercises have been completed in the past year, one on the genuineness of WP applicant’s employment history and one on the genuineness of bank documents provided by TRV applicants. Significant fraud was detected within the WP program and processing changes have been made to include up-front verifications on all worker cases. Little fraud was found in the bank document QA.

….

The AFLO participates in FCC initiatives and is a member of the New Delhi Taskforce. AFLO participated in Project Chakra, an FCC project to target unscrupulous agents in Punjab. This resulted in the arrest of six agents, including one arrest from a Canadian referral.

It is clear that CIC Chandigarh faces numerous fraud issues.

In Punjab, corruption with police continues to be a major challenge…………. It is widely reported in the media and senior police officials have admitted that their officers are easily bribed.

Identities of legitimate sponsors and their documentation is being recycled by agents in subsequent applications, especially with siblings……. and fraud is detected in about 10% of the cases.

Chandigarh has recently been receiving a large number of TRV applications that have nothing more than a hotel reservation and airline booking as supporting documents. Further investigation has uncovered that many of these applicants believed that they were applying for a WP but the agent only submitted a TRV application. After the inevitable refusal, in some cases, agents will convince the applicant they have been issued a WP by sending them a scan of a fraudulent WP and charging very large fees before the passport is returned.

As revealed in a WP QA exercise, there is a continuing trend of worker applicants submitting fraudulent experience letters. Over half of all WP applicants misrepresent their employment history.

Wow.

Temporary Resident Program

CIC Chandigarh had a decrease in Temporary Resident Visas in 2013 over 2012.  Combined with a small growth in the study and work permit programs the overall decrease in application intake was 6%.

Visitors

The vast majority of applications are submitted via the VAC. Applicants are able to submit urgent applications (e.g. death in the family) in person. We will soon close our window except for exceptional cases and plan to have urgent cases sent to us from the VAC with special coding so they will receive one day service.

PG1 applications continue to account for 15% of our total TRV applications. We strongly encourage applicants to do upfront meds and have changed information on the website to encourage them to do so.

Work Permits

Low skilled workers with unreliable documentation continue to add complexity to decision making.

Applicants submitting fraudulent employment reference letters especially with the truck driver applicants.

….. the vast majority of temporary worker applications are refused.

If you would like me to send you the full version of the Environmental Overview for Chandigargh please e-mail me.


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