Tribune News Service
Amritsar, March 9
A substantial increase in number of malpractices by unauthorised agents has compelled New Zealand immigration officials to come here officially to raise awareness about licenced immigration advisers.
Registrar of New Zealand Immigration Advisers Catherine Albiston and Immigration New Zealand (INZ) Assistant General Manager Geoff Scott said that the purpose of their visit to India was dual.
The first is to caution local aspirants who wish to settle in New Zealand against felling prey to unauthorised immigration agents. The second is to extend an open invitation to issue licence to those who adopt immigration consultancy as profession, subject to the condition that they qualify the New Zealand Immigration Advice course.
Catherine Albiston said that in India, there are a total of 30 licenced immigration advising firms, out of which 14 are in Punjab, including Chandigarh.
“Our purpose of launching this awareness campaign is to help ensure Indian residents looking to migrate to New Zealand know what they need to do when seeking immigration.
“We came across number of complaints from India, especially from Punjab, that after landing in New Zealand, they are subjected to exploitation in terms of wages and work permits.
“After scrutinising a number of cases, we came to the conclusion that the root cause was that the victims actually do not adopt the authorised way to gain entry and hence, they lose all chance to call for government assistance or police.
“Such instances brought bad name to the sides, the government as well as the illegal immigrants. Therefore, it was decided to come out with a message to raise awareness of licenced immigration advisers in India,” she said.
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