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How will the change in immigration rules in Prince Edward Island, Canada affect Indian students?

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Relations between India and Canada: Unexpectedly, the Canadian province of Prince Edward Island (PEI), known for its picturesque landscape and tranquil lifestyle, announced a significant relaxation of immigration regulations that will primarily affect the Indian student population.

Protests and unease among Indian students

This announcement has sparked protests and general unease. Hundreds of Indian students are now at risk of deportation as a result of this ruling, raising questions about the province's immigration policies and their impact on international relations.

The policy change, which includes a 25% reduction in immigration permits, was brought about by the strain on Prince Edward Island's housing and health care systems. Immigration to the province has increased significantly, particularly among Indian students. This influx has tested the province's ability to provide adequate health care to its current citizens.

Resistance and uncertainty among students

The policy change has faced strong opposition from the affected student body since its release. The sudden changes have left many students uncertain about their future in Canada. Since the majority of these students are taking courses that do not meet the criteria for “essential services,” they are currently ineligible for the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) under existing standards.

As the Indian Ministry of External Affairs has stated that it is unaware of the impending changes, the situation is now being handled diplomatically. Prince Edward Island (PEI) is one of the thirteen provinces and territories that make up Canada. Prince Edward Island is the smallest province in Canada in terms of both population and land area, but has the highest population density. The island's education system attracts a large number of international students, most of whom are from India.

Strain on the housing and health systems

Among the 16 Indian immigrants who came to Prince Edward Island in 2014–15, 16 were students. In 2018–19, there were 401 Indian immigrants in Prince Edward Island. The University of Prince Edward Island (UPEI) enrolls more than 2,000 international students from over 90 countries each year, representing about 35% of the total student body.

The number of Indian students (assuming they still constitute 42% of the international student body) would be approximately 840, according to UPEI data, meaning that 35% of the students are from abroad. This assumes that there are 5,714 students in total (of which 2,000 constitute 35% of the international student body).