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Tuesday, October 3, 2023

Canada’s Immigration Minister Vows Justice for Indian Students Victimized by Fake College Scam

The students were issued fake college admission letters drafted by their immigration consultants

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Aditya Saikrishna
Aditya Saikrishna
I am 21 years old and an avid Motorsports enthusiast.

CANADA: Over 700 international students from India face deportation from Canada after falling victim to a fraudulent college enrolment scam.

However, Immigration Minister Sean Fraser has vowed to ensure a “fair outcome” for these students who innocently became entangled in the scheme.

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The minister’s promise, made via Twitter, offers hope to the affected students but leaves uncertain whether the government will suspend deportation orders during their case resolution.

Advocates representing the students revealed that they arrived in Canada between 2017 and 2018 on valid student permits, having been issued fake college admission letters by their immigration consultants, particularly one named Brijesh Mishra, based in Jalandhar. 

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Upon arrival, the consultant informed the students that they could not enrol in the specified college stating various reasons, such as deferral or unavailability of seats. 

Consequently, Brijesh instructed the students to change colleges, unknowingly perpetuating the fraud. When the students started applying for permanent residency, they discovered the falsified offer letters.

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Minister Fraser emphasized that Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada is working closely with the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to address the issue. 

A group of affected students has been staging protests near Toronto Pearson Airport since May 28, and they also demonstrated outside the CBSA office on May 30. 

The latest plan involves holding a demonstration outside the constituency office of Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino in Toronto.

The alleged mastermind behind the fake admission letters, Brijesh Mishra, reportedly charged the students significant amounts of money. However, his company has since closed, and he has been missing for several months.

India’s minister for external affairs, Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, voiced his concern over the situation, urging Canada not to punish students who embarked on their education in good faith. 

He emphasized that Canada must punish those responsible for misleading the students rather than penalizing the students, who are the scam victims.

The government of Punjab, the state from which most affected students hail, appealed to the Canadian government to consider “humanitarian and compassionate grounds” while resolving the issue. 

Punjab’s minister of Non-Residential Indian (NRI) affairs, Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal, expressed Punjab’s commitment to pursuing legal action against the culprits and highlighted the dire consequences faced by the students if deported.

The situation’s complexity necessitates a thorough examination of each case to ensure a fair outcome for the affected international students. 

While Minister Fraser’s promise of a fair resolution offers some reassurance, the students and their advocates await further clarity on the status of the deportation orders and the actions that Canada will take against those responsible for the fraudulent scheme.

Also Read: Australia Takes Lead in AI Regulation, Aims to Combat Deep Fakes and Misinformation


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