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  World   Americas  24 May 2017  'Junk lottery for H-1B to attract brightest talent'

'Junk lottery for H-1B to attract brightest talent'

Published : May 24, 2017, 4:51 am IST
Updated : May 24, 2017, 5:00 am IST

Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner said the H-1B programme is in a “desperate” need of reform.

Jim Sensenbrenner
 Jim Sensenbrenner

Washington: A top Republican lawmaker has demanded abolition of the lottery system in allocating H-1B visas, the most sought-after by Indian IT professionals, to restore the original purpose of the programme to bring the “best and brightest” to the country.

Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner said the programme is in a “desperate” need of reform and it must be addre-ssed with a serious, clear-eyed approach.

“In the current system, 85,000 H-1B visas are allotted by lottery annually. If there is competition to come to the US, we should ensure we get the best and brightest, not just roll the dice and accept the results,” Sensenb-renner, chairman of the house judiciary sub-committee on immigration and border security, wrote in an op-ed in the Forbes magazine.

Applicants with specialised skills should be selected for specific positions, the way the programme intends, Mr Sensenbrenner said, arguing that by shuffling foreign applicants through a lottery system, they empower businesses to replace qualified American workers with cheaper labour. “Higher standards and stricter qualifications must be enforced. No job that could be filled by a qualified American worker should be given to a visa holder for less money,” Mr Sensenb-renner said. He said the H-1B programme has transformed into a way for companies to undercut American workers.

Tags: h-1b, indian it, jim sensenbrenner, mr sensenbrenner