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Indian Tier 4 (General) Student Visa Applications Suspended


India accounts for more UK student visa applications than any other country worldwide and following a rise in applications of more than 650% on the same period in 2008, the UK Border Agency has temporarily suspended UK Tier 4 (General) Student Visa applications for the UK from Northern India, Nepal and Bangladesh.

Over October, November and December 2008 there were 1,800 student visa applications received from Northern India compared to 13,500 applications over the same period in 2009, from Northern India alone. British officials in the countries concerned have said that the system has been completely overwhelmed by the sheer volume of applications and concerns run high that many applications may not be genuine. And this concern is not misplaced as offers of visa as a route to permanent settlement in the UK are not uncommon in the areas where the suspension is in place.

Sir Richard Stagg, British High Commissioner in Delhi, takes this issue very seriously and will not allow any abuse of the system to happen. He has promised tough action and while the backlog of applications is checked all new UK Tier 4 Student Visa applications will be placed on hold until at least the end of February.

The UK Border Agency released the following statement:

“The points-based system gives us the flexibility to act to maintain the integrity of the visa system, whilst processing legitimate applications fairly, thoroughly and as quickly as possible.

“We continually check and monitor all student applications and education providers to ensure that they meet the required standards.
“We will take tough action against those who attempt to abuse the system.”

The move to suspend UK Tier 4 Student visa applications has been mostly welcomed by the legal profession as combating illegal immigration; however, concerns have been raised about the impact on and inconvenience to genuine students. Many lawyers have raised concern that the suspension could lead to panic and with only the promise of a review at the end of February, the suspension could run indefinitely.

“The problem that we’re going to have is that the genuine students who want to come over for the universities they’re going to suffer as a result and they won’t be able to get here in time for their courses,” said one immigration lawyer.

More than 500,000 Indians visit the UK every year, among them tens of thousands of students.


  1. Mr D.

    The month Junes 1st week is quite over. September is 3 yards laters but no information ,either we can have our class or not.
    DO u thing to move to another country?

    WHy they r taking too much time?
    They should atleast open the Visas for PhD & Masters..
    Its can b a nig downfall in the student flow chart..

    ANy latest news u have?


    • Applications still suspended from Bangladesh, which is a nightmare. Leaves students really stuck and I have great sympathy. If and when they do lift the ban, I imagine that they will do so in a similar fashion as North India; restrictions on applicants studying courses above a certain level will be removed first.

      As soon as we have news on when the ban is lifted, we’ll immediately notify everyone.

      • Dear mr D,
        I heard that, the decision was made in 28 th june , to lift the Ban from Bangladesh. But the final announcement was not expressed yet by the high Commision.
        Lots of university representatives are here in bangladesh for current spot addmission. I also got the spot in MSc in Business Management( university of glamorgan) with scholarship . After that, I paid the tution fee as well as got the CAS letter. DO you thing i gonna drop the papers in VFS office, because I heard that they may take it for highly trusted partners catyagory universities.

  2. i am from nepal and i had applied for student visa under pbs tier 4 on 27 october 2009, i havent got any decision from ukba .please tell me why ukba not return my application…and My session starts in november 31 2009. plz tell me what can i do in this situation……..

  3. hi, i been apply for tier4 student visa and ukba refuse my application they say u dont sub ur ori document so we dont give u 30 point and when i was in contry one of my family friend he is my sponser so i submite his financial document as my sponser ukba say we accept only parents,gove,int bussi sponser so can u pls give me advice what can i do

  4. Hi Daniel,

    You are doing a good job. Just the same situation from Bangladesh. I have got admission for my MSc in University of Edinburgh..My class will be starting from September 13, 2010.

    Also important is that I have secured a full scholarship as well. I wonder whether the UKBA might consider to lift ban on postgraduate students with holding scholarships like commonwealth, Chevening etc. What is your thoughts regarding this? I am just worried since I have got the scholarship news. What sorts of action we can take to speed up the process of lifting Ban on student visa application?


  5. Receiving of Tier4 application from Bangladesh has been suspended from 01.02.2010. could you please know me the expected date of withdrawal of suspension? Let me know as soon as possible

  6. I need to know that When the uk student visa will be open for Bangladeshi student. please inform me as soon as possible

  7. Hi ! Mr. Daniel,

    I am a student from Kathmandu ,Nepal. I had applied for UK visa on 7 jan 2010. Th VFS said i would get it after 16 Working days, but as the suspension of tier 4 took place i am here waiting and waiting to see the change in application status instead of ” Your application has been forwarde to british high commission”.
    Dear Sir, please advie on this ……what should i do. I applied almost a month before Feb 1 (SUSPENSION). I am In a dilemma wehter to withdraw or to wait for documents or to apply for other courses here in kathmandu….Please please advice…

    Faithfully tours.

  8. Dear D,
    I am also from Nepal the major problem here around us is even we have applied before Jan we are not getting anykind of response from BHC whereas our documents are still there in BHC. It is true that our college is under suspension but i beleive something should be done by BHC to release the documents either by giving the reason that your college is suspended so we did not take you application as granted which will really enables us to thing forward for next option and get our documents for further study even here in own country or as the students wish to. Don,t you think this really very confusing work fromBHC. I hope to get the fact,

    • Hi Tom,

      Hot only that, but all visa applications are still suspended from Nepal I believe. Until that blanket ban is lifted, no applications will be considered.

  9. Hi Deniel.
    Can you plz tell me when the lift of ban on visa for Bagladeshi students will be in effect ?
    I got offer from a good university. My class will start on October, 2010.
    I am in dying need to get a visa before October .
    When to expect the lift , I want to know.

    • Hi Muna

      Still no news; hopefully they will review the situation at the end of this month.

      Don’t worry though – October 2010 is a long way away!

  10. Dear Mr D.
    Any news on the Lift of Ban from Bangladesh?
    Atleast , so do u thing i can start my MBA class from 9 th august intake?

    its realy amazed that for huge amount of bogus students, some few good!! student are facing sufferings.

  11. Dear Sir,
    I want to express you that I have got uk student visa but before flying my sponsor has suspended and still now suspension is going on…………….Will you tell me please , at this moment what can I do ? Could I take admission in another college ?


  12. Hi! has anyone got a tier 4 visa from nepal that applied before January 19th.

    I have applied on January 19th and it has almost been 2 months that website status has not been changed and still says ” your application has been forwarded to British high commission”

    My college is reputed college in London and has never been removed from UKBA.

    Danielle, any suggestion??

    Many Thanks in advance.

    Please advice.

  13. Dear Mr Daniel!

    You are doing a great job here replying to all these queries. I have one too. I applied for UK student visa on the 04th Jan2010 and my college, TASMAC London School of Business was suspended from the UKBA sponsor list on around the 26th Jan2010. I was supposed to start my programme at TASMAC on the February 8th but the said i could come as late as 8th March. As of today, they are not yet back on the list and my passports is still with the embassy here in Kuala Lumpur. Am a foreigner in Malaysia and i may have issues with the immigration as my visa is soon to expire. Please can you advice me on what to do? i did pay all my tuition fee for my MBA programme at TASMAC. Now my money is stuck with them and i can’t get any updates from the embassy. Please i need serious advice. I hope to read from you soon.



  14. Dear Mr. Daniel,
    I am a Software Engineer from Bangladesh.I completed my BSc from East West University.After my graduation I decided to have my Master in Business related subject and then I enrolled for MBA in EThames Graduate School, Ilford, Essex,UK for April,2010 intake

    I have all my documents including job certificates, CV, academic documents, IELTS, medical reports etc ( total 17 papers).

    I paid the total tution fees of amount 7885 pound and later on i got the Visa offer letter from my college.

    At the time of applying for visa in High Commission ( 30th jan), I heard about the suspension .

    my class gonna start from 24th April,10,
    my induction is in 14th April,10
    in addition my IOM medical report gonna expire in 15th April,10.
    SO i am little bit worried .
    If I missed the session, it will make impact on my carrier,
    I have to retake the medical test again, which is wasting of money.
    A huge amount of my money is in stuck in Colleges account.

    SO its realy a messy situation.

    Plz , give me some clue.

    I heard that from March 3, UKBA may start their work again, but i am realy little bit upset, becasue you know that, i working guy cant sit without working, and for this MBA , I resigned my job In DHL World wide Express BD.

    Thank you.

    • Hi Mohiuddin

      Your documents will be valid as they will be judged by the date you submitted your application.

      Your application will have been placed on hold pending the resolution of your sponsor’s suspension. This can take several months.

      You should stay in touch with the college and discuss deferring your entry. What advice are they giving to students in your situation?

      Keep me posted on your situation Mohiuddin.

    • Dear Mr D.

      Thanks . My college EThames Graduate School is not in the suspented list. Its a good college.
      but the main thing i am concern about , the lift of the Ban over bangladesh.

      The Student of Bangladesh cant apply for the Student visa for the Ban.

      my class starts from 25th April,I have 45 days+ time. but if UKBA not lift the Ban from bangladesh before 1st of April, thenits a big problem ,all our efford gonna be into dungeon.
      So you think they will lift the ban in last of March or 1st week of April?
      My case is quite like Suraj of Nepal.
      I dont know , why UKBA is not following the order of their minister.
      The British Minister for Business, Innovation and Skills Pat McFadden recently announced that the suspension will be
      lifted for all students wanting to study higher education courses, whether foundation degrees, undergraduate or postgraduate
      with effect from March 1. for Bangladesh.

      But Is it Executed ??

  15. hellllllllo mr.daniel

    i have submitted my visa appliction on 19th jan and my college oxbridge college was suspeded around 26th jan.wht will happened to my application.could i get visa or i have to withdraw application or re admiision in other college thn re put my application ..


  16. The VFS office of Nepal is closed since 1 Feb. When it will be opened?
    There is any chane to open this Feb. or not?

    • Hi Paban

      VFS has stopped all applications from North India, Nepal and Bangladesh following a sudden spike in the number of applications received.

      They are expected to review the situation at the end of February and make an announcement around the same time. I wouldn’t expect them to be taking any new applications until March, at least.

      • hey daniel, firstly thank you for taking time to reoly to people’s queries on this website.

        I am a nepalese student and was also supposed to apply for my student visa in feb but due to the suspension of visa applications at the VFS, now i don’t know what to do?
        My session starts in april 5, 2010. will i be able to make application in march (if it opens) and be able to attend my session?

        What do you think?

        • Hi Suraj

          Thanks for your comments.

          Good news – the ban was partially lifted, at least for Indian students anyway. I’m awaiting confirmation for Bangladeshi and Nepalese students.

          Even with the ban, applying in March before your start date in April should be more than enough time.

          You need to make sure your college makes a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies for you as you will be applying after 22 February 2010.

          • Thanks Daniel for your response. I have one more question.

            It says in UKBA rules that a student can’t work as an entertainer; I am a professional DJ, so does this mean that i will not be able to work as a DJ in UK while I am a student?

            • Hi Suraj

              I don’t think you will be able to, but I’m not sure. Check with an immigration lawyer.

              • does this mean that i will not be allowed to work as per the ukba tier 4 student visa rule even 10 hours a week?

            • Hey surajrnSo what did you finally discovered? Were you able to work as dj under tier 4 visa.rnAm keen to know as I am also a dj and planning to do my ug from uk.

  17. Just as a bit of an final update.

    I’ve been looking at a about a 100 CV’s a day over the last week for Java / C# roles. 70% of what I see are foreign nationals who came over to the UK for a 1 year MSc and have been working here since. It is very obvious it was all part of a stregetic plan to get into the UK job market.

    Problem is that 90% of those I speak to, do not communicate well enough in English for me to put over to my clients without feeling “professionally embarrassed”

    I’m all for technology professionals being allowed into the UK… but English Conversational Communication skill need to improve a good 200% – 300% before my clients will seriously consider them

    I know this if probably the wrong forum for this feedback… but hopefully someone with see it, who cares. Hopefully this message will get to the right people.

    • Hi Jonny

      Thanks for your recent comments – you’ve raised some important issues I think.

      I want to answer your points fully, hence the delay in getting back to you. I don’t want you to think I’m ignoring you, or frowning upon you and thinking that this isn’t a good place to discuss such issues.

      Once I’ve cleared some of the backlog, I’ll get straight to your comments.

      Cheers, Daniel

  18. hellllllllo mr.daniel

    i have submitted my visa appliction on 20th jan and my college oxbridge college was suspeded around 26th jan.wht will happened to my application.could i get visa or i have to withdraw application or re admiision in other college thn re put my application ..

    pls give me better reply.



    • Hi Sapan

      According to the UK Border Agency regulations, your application should be placed on hold pending the outcome of your education provider’s inspection. However, some students have reported that their applications are being refused as their school or college no longer has a valid Tier 4 sponsor licence – I must stress, this is not the majority.

      You could of course withdraw your visa application but:

      - You will lose your fee for the visa application;
      - You may not be entitled to a refund of fees as you were not refused a visa – you should check your education provider’s terms & conditions.

      I suggest you stay in contact with your college and defer the start date of your course and await the outcome of your visa application. Speak with your school, it’s so important.

      Keep me posted on your progress Sapan and good luck.

  19. Kind of feel bad for writing that now :(

    But the inability to carry on a conversation in English. Understand questions being asked, so that one can respond intelligently/accurately..etc. Well that is a stand that all my clients are asking for.

    Being able to understand Vocabulary, Read and Write.. while a sufficient standard to Study in the UK. Just isn’t cutting the mustard on commercial projects worth £1,000′s or £100K’s.

    If you saw the interview feedback I see. You would know where I am coming from.

    The Standard needs to be increased by at least 300% in many cases.

    Or??? Just cut out the Working, road to “indefinite leave to remain” aspect that such a high % are going for.

    If you did, What sort of Decrease in applications do you think you’d see? really?

    • Hi
      am from India :) u dont have to feel bad about the remarks. what u brought up is a very legitimate issue.
      Definitely in an english speaking country one should have good communication skills else it becomes frustrating for the employer as well as employee.

  20. I’ve been in IT recruitment for 10 years. Over the past 4 years I’ve seen with increased momentum a huge onslaught onto the UK IT workforce of very substandard English communication skills.

    I mean the English vocabulary is there… but that’s about it. It is really frustrating from my end to have to deal with the 100′s of emails, phone calls a week of people whom based on “integration into UK Business workforce” well… have just lowered the standard, so much.

    The catch 22 is that there are skills shortages, so yes, the UK needs to do something in order to help companies delivery on IT projects and grow as businesses.

    But Trust me, the people I come across and the stories I hear about their “grand” plans, personal situations and dreams for their families… YES. I’d be doing the same in the same situation… but really such a high % of what I see on a weekly basis… well It’s really ‘taking the piss.

    In their situation, I’d be doing the same thing. If the government of the country I was in made it that easy for me to “jump on the bandwagon” Well… I’d be thinking – What a bunch of idiots… but, good for me and my family. “Glad I got in before they shut the door!!!”

    -Luckily the UK Universities will be so scared of losing Revenue… they will lobby really hard to get every possibly person in. An yes, 6 or 7 out of every 10 will contribute very well… the other 3 or 4… well they will make me want to quit my job.

    You can Rip me apart now for my personal comment ;)

  21. Pingback: UKBA Removes Institutions from the Tier 4 Sponsor Register | UK Student News and Events

  22. i am from nepal and i had applied for student visa under pbs tier 4 on 12 jan 2010 i havent got any decision from ukba since then.please anyone tell me will this suspension affect on my visa processing.

    • Hi Punk

      Yes I think it will – they are expected to make an announcement following a review at the end of February.

      If you hear anything in the mean time, come back and let us all know.

      Good luck.

  23. thanks for your reply. I am anxious about the new rules would come soon. I am waiting for the news, that I can apply for a student visa soon. Please inform me the latest news.

  24. I am really concerned over the plight of those well – intentioned Indian and Nepalese students who come over here to study. They are being hit all ways by the Government, the shambolic colleges, and the UKBA. Colleges that were “A” graded last year suddenly blacklisted, Visa applications suspended, rights of appeal abolished, lack of information from anyone (apart from Daniel on these web pages), so that students are hanging around for weeks not knowing what to do next. What a shambles!
    In my capacity as the Chair of SHIVA Charity, I am helping a student from Nepal. He came here in October, and has had 15 hours a week for 7 weeks of “lectures” at his college, with 300 others in a hall without a microphone. 7 computers between 3000 students. Since Christmas he has been waiting and wondering, as the college was rightly blacklisted.
    But who oversaw and regulated the place last year? Nobody… so the Gov raps the UKBA on the knuckles, and then a sudden over reaction, combined with the old fear of illegal immigration.
    The blame lies with all three institutions, and the international students are the victims …
    Bob Uppington (Chair of Trustees, SHIVA Charity)

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