India asks US to take lenient view of duped Indian students

New Delhi, Jan 29 (PTI) India has asked the US to take a"lenient" view of the students duped by a California-based"sham" university amidst reports that they were forced to wearradio collars around their ankles so that American authoritiescan keep a track of their movements.

Maintaining that the the fraud was done by the USuniversity, Minister for Overseas Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravitoday said "we requested the state department to take alenient view because all the students are innocent."

He said the university had no registration and it was notthe fault of the Indian students.

Ravi said the Indian Consulate General there was in touchwith the local authorities on the issue and they are waitingfor a report and only then they will know what assistanceshould be given to the students.

Duped by the authorities of Tri-Valley University, whichhas been shut down, hundreds of Indian students, mostly fromAndhra Pradesh, faced deportation back home after having losttheir student visa status.

According to a federal complaint filed in a Californiacourt last week, the University helped foreign nationalsillegally acquire immigration status. The students arereported to have paid lakhs of rupees for obtaining a visa fortheir category and also for students'' work permit.

Meanwhile, sources said the wearing of trackers was partof the procedure in cases where there was a possibility ofdeportation.

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