Saturday, April 07, 2007

The Evil called "Desi Consultant"

Every other week when I come back home from work my wife used to ask me something like this
“You know what. This girl who has just 3year degree from India and on H4 visa here is going to apply for H1B through a desi consultant. Can I also try?
The desi consultants want my wife who has zero knowledge in IT field to say “Yes” so that they can file H1B visa for her. This sums up how desi consultants work in US and why the 65,000 limit for H1B visa got over in a day.

I fully know that there are a lot of good desi consultants out there. But recently so many have mushroomed that they are just  looking out for a “living human body” so that they can file H1B on his/her behalf. Only thing that human body should have is that he should be able to give them around $4000. Rest will be taken care by the consultant. The desi consultant would make a fake resume with tons of experience loaded into it in which you wont even know a word other than your own name and fool the immigration system in US and file for your H1B visa.

By US law it is illegal for the employer (desi consultant) to make employee pay for the H1B Visa expenses. But for desi consultants they have their own law. The way the desi consultant works reminds me of the agents who work to recruit laborers to Middle East. They are fooling the educated people and the sad part is that educated people fall into this trap due to their greediness for earning dollars.

Two weeks back I got a call from one of my good friend who is working in India. He was approached by a desi consultancy with a promise of $40/hour salary, 1 month paid time off to go to India but he has to pay 2 lakhs immediately to process his H1B visa. He was so excited about this offer and was talking to me about the money he will earn in a year after he comes to the US. He called me because he didn’t have money to pay the consultant (consultant asked him to pay very next day) and he wanted to borrow money from me. When I heard about the offer, I knew something was fishy. I asked him the name of the consultancy and I just googled it. All the links were that it is a fraud company and the agent of the consultant just disappears once you give the money. They won’t file the H1B papers properly and if immigration people ask for more documents they won’t provide. There is no clause to get back the money in case the visa is rejected and lot of people have lost money. If at all you come here they won’t help you to get any job. If you get it they take a big chunk of that money. He went through the links I sent to him and he decided not to apply. Because of my advice his application was not among the 133,000 received on the first day for H1 B Visa.

To be in H1 B Visa you need to be in payroll. I know one consultant who issues pay check to those people who are in “bench”. Once they get the paycheck they have to cash it and give the cash back to consultant. Again after 2 weeks he will use that same money to pay them. See how desi consultants misuse the law.

If a desi consultant calls you or you call a desi consultant, within the first 5 minutes he will ask you this question “How old are you?” Why? The older you are the more experience they can show in the fake resume they prepare. My wife is 25 years old and many desi consultants are ready to hire her. When we told them that she doesn’t have any experience in the IT field this is what one of the consultant told us ”Any year you lived after the age of 18 can be converted to relevant experience by making a fake resume. So to apply for H1B you need to be only 23 years. Any one above 23 years can easily get a H1B visa”. For those consultants no educational qualification would matter other than your age.

What is the net result of all these fraud practices by desi consultants? The genuine talented people who deserve to get H1B visa suffer.

Having taken 1 degree in India and another in US (about to finish another in a month), I know the difficulty and pain of getting a degree in US compared to India. When one graduates from a US university he would know the latest technologies in their field unlike in India where you study an outdated syllabus (of course institutions like IITs are an exception). With all the hard work they put in, if a situation arises that you can no longer work in US, because of deceptive tactics of money hungry desi consultants, it is very sad.

I could understand the pain; anguish and agony of hundreds of graduates from US universities who have applied for H1B visa this year and are now praying that they get through the lottery system. If I haven’t applied last year I could have been one among them after 6 years of hard work waiting for my luck to fetch me a job.

Compare this. My friend who has just finished his MS in Computer Science with a good GPA failing to get H1B while a person who has just 3 years bachelors degree in something from India getting H1B visa as a software professional showing 8 years of fake experience. The person who really studied that subject is out and who fooled the system is in. Such a thing should never happen. The fact that such a thing is happening shows that there is something terribly wrong with the system.

Desi consultants are insulting the system. They should be made to obey the law of the land. Let us spread the word among our friends, relatives and others we know about the evil practices of those consultants so that they wont get any more “living human bodies”. Let us expose them.

“If we don’t act now this menace called desi consultants will grow into a big mafia powerful enough to suck the blood of genuine employment seekers in the US”

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