Asserting that they fully comply with the US immigration laws, Indian global software majors Infosys and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) on Friday denied receiving indication of any fresh probe into alleged violation of H1-B visas by them.
“We have received no indication of any broader investigation of visa practices by the US Department of Labor,” the city-based Infosys s aid in a statement here.
Similarly, a TCS spokesperson told IANS from Mumbai that it had rigorous internal controls to ensure full compliance with all regulatory requirements related to US immigration laws, including those related to H-1B visas.
H1-B visas, which permit foreign nationals to work in the US for a maximum of six years, are granted to overseas firms for sending their skilled employees to work on onsite projects of their clients across north America.
Both the IT majors have hundreds of their techies working in the US firms on H-1B or L-1 (temporary) visas, generating over 60 of their export revenues.
“We are committed to complying with the US immigration laws. The US labor department regularly selects a percentage of visa and labour condition applications for extra scrutiny in this (IT) industry. We work closes with the department to assist them in this activity in the ordinary course of our business,” Infosys said.
The outsourcing majors’ reaction came in response to a media report earlier in the day that the US government had begun investigating alleged H1-B visa violations by them.
The labor department has opened the investigation against TCS and Infosys for “possible violations of visa rules for foreign technology workers under contracts they held with an electric utility Southern California Edison”, a leading New York daily said on Friday.
The power utility had recently laid-off about 500 tech workers amid claims that many of them were made to train their replacements who were immigrants on temporary work visas brought in by the Indian IT firms.
The move comes close on the heels of entertainment firm Walt Disney laying off 250 local employees and replacing them with Indians holding H1-B visas.
Echoing the firm stand of Infosys and TCS, a top official of the IT industry representative body (Nasscom) said a deliberate attempt was being made to project the Indian IT sector wrongly without considering their commitment to compliances and contribution to the US enterprises.
“Indian software firms have been complying with the US visa regulations and cooperating with the US labor department in responding to any query on judicious use of its visas,” Nasscom president R. Chandrashekhar told IANS from New Delhi.
In a related development, Indian stock broking firm (Angel Broking) said it did not foresee any financial implication for both the IT majors from the US probe into the use of visas granted to them by the labour department.
“This development (probe) is in the normal course of business and hence, we believe that it won’t have major impact on the business dynamics,” Angel Broking’s vice-president (research) Sarabj it Kour Nangra said in a statement from Mumbai.