US move to hike H1B minimum wages will hit Indian IT sweatshops
By Team Legistify / 2017-11-18

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A new legislation in the United States—which proposes to increase minimum wages, paid to foreign tech workers employed in the country on H1B visas, from $60,000 to $90,000—has set off alarm bells in India with the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM), saying that the proposed law is “arbitrarily targeting” Indian companies which took up only a small portion of these visas last year.

Two days ago, a judiciary committee of the US House of Representatives approved the bipartisan Bill ‘Protect and Grow American Jobs Act’, proposed by Republican Congressman Darell Issa and Democratic Congressman Scott Peters, to raise minimum H1B wages from $60,000 to $90,000. The Bill also proposes making Master’s degrees mandatory to qualify for work with H1B visas.

The Bill will now proceed to the full House and will also have to be taken up by the Senate before it comes into effect. The law proposed by Darell Isa is among several intended to modify the H1B visa programme which is seen as being instrumental in taking jobs away from US citizens and handing them over to foreign tech workers, especially Indians.Nasscom president R Chandrashekhar, who met several US politicians earlier this year to lobby against proposals for curbs on H1B visas, said of the Bill: “It can disrupt the marketplace, threaten thousands of US jobs, and stifle US innovation by unfairly and arbitrarily targeting a handful of companies who used just 16 per cent of the new H1B visas in the financial year 2016 while imposing no new requirements on the vast majority of companies that use the visas to do the same exact same things.”

Pic Courtesy- Money Control


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