Members of the Global Organization of People of Indian Origin, the South Asian Council for Social Services and the Kerala Center organized a seminar held Sept. 27 in Elmont, N.Y., to discuss the changing rules and updates pertaining to immigration.

Attorneys Michael Phulwani, David Nachman and Anand Ahuja were the panelists at the seminar, which was moderated by GOPIO International founder and president Dr. Thomas Abraham.

Phulwani covered topics such as how to read the visa bulletin, H-1B alternatives and the present status of DACA and DAPA.

Ahuja, who also serves as the GOPIO-New York president, spoke on business and investment visas, as well as special immigrant juvenile status.

Nachman discussed AC-21, STEM OPT issues and changes, provisional wavers, consular processing issues and President Barack Obama’s immigration reform initiatives.

There were also a number of community issues discussed at the seminar. Some brought up the point that the U.S. has to include India into the treaty investment and treaty trader categories for the immigration visa purpose.

Other concerns discussed included a need for grass-root actions to support Obama's executive actions that were announced in November 2014; the present visa bulletin reflects extreme backlogs for Indian nationals in many visa classifications; and H-1B nonimmigrant professional and specialty occupation work visas continue to be scrutinized heavily by several U.S. agencies.

The discussion ended with an agreement that GOPIO and other community groups work with the Obama administration to resolve the issues.

Kerala Center president Thambi Thalappillil, GOPIO-New York vice president Inderjit Singh and SACSS executive director Sudha Acharya were also present at the seminar.

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