As we have written several times US Consulates in India are pretty much screwed up at this point and US has not even appointed an envoy in India.

Biden administration’s recommendation was former LA Mayer Garcetti but this move was stalled because Eric Garcetti’s senior official was involved in a sex scandal.

In the absence of such envoy the person who is incharge is called chargé d’affaires and currently it is Patricia Lacina.

But the real person who is under the scanner is Don Heflin. Don Heflin has completely screwed up visa processing in India by introducing massive delays even for completely straightforward processes like dropbox visa. The person is deeply despised by Indian immigrants who hold him responsible for the mess he has created.

Don Heflin also endorsed concept of “agents” who book non existent visa slots for immigrants just trying to revalidate their existing visa. Note that Indian immigrants who have lived in USA for many years can not get their visa revalidated at the consulates because there are not visa appointments available there.

Booking visa slots by paying money to agents
Booking visa slots by paying money to agents

Immigrant anger at US consulates is fully justified as the consulates have not come clean on how agents are able to get appointments but immigrants can not and why dropbox needs an appointment in first place.

Dropbox process is incredibly simple and takes less than 10 minutes for an agent to clear, this should not even need an “appointment”.

Since Biden administration decided to waive interviews, the Trump administration’s anti-Indian plants in the consulate and Department of State got activated and they decided to create “appointment” concept to deliberately harass Indian immigrants.

The question is how long such incompetence will be tolerates by immigrants as well as the employers who depend on their services. Will the Department of State launch an investigation for allegations of corruption ? Time will tell.

What can you do : 

Please write a letter to your Congress person asking them to look into mismanagement of the consulates and demand accountability. All you have to do is spend around $4. Use this service to send a typed out letter from the comfort of your desk.

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