What Immigration means for Indians and how Canada is Ignoring People with Expired CoPR?
Immigration – the word doesn’t sound fancy if we go by its literal meaning but for many, immigration stands for the fulfilment of dreams, it stands for opportunity and it stands for a fresh start. It is this charm that immigration encapsulates for which people across the globe pack their lives in bags, leave their homes behind and relocate to new countries.
One particular country that has become the hot favourite of Indians from the immigration perspective is Canada. It is one country that is inviting applications from around the world for permanent residency. And for Indians, it is one platinum opportunity to relocate and start a new life. Although India isn’t what it was only twenty years ago, India is booming and quickly becoming the hub of opportunities, especially for the younger generation. Still, it is not just the opportunity to earn a living that entices people from India to relocate to the West, it is much more than just that.
India is one flourishing nation that is promising growth and prosperity to its people but sometimes life is above and beyond just money. I know many fellow citizens who make a bomb of a living here in India and yet, they will not think twice if they get the opportunity to leave. We go to the West seeking a new experience, seeking independence, seeking self-reliance. We are well aware of the fact that life is not a bed of roses when you move abroad. While the West boasts of equal opportunity and a better life, we are not oblivious to the fact that racism is a dark reality for us and equal opportunity is only a hoax and yet, we Indians make our own place with our perseverance and resilience. We work hard throughout our life, we educate ourselves, we are intelligent people with an empathetic heart and any nation that offers us an opportunity to settle there knows they are inviting quality individuals who would add to their national income and progress.
However, Canada this year has played a lame game. The pandemic and the subsequent lockdown were a difficult phenomenon to deal with for any nation. There were thousands of approved PR applicants who were to fly to Canada in the months of March, April, May and so on but the lockdown put a halt on their plans. These were also the people who quit their jobs, took their kids out of schools and sold everything they had to move to Canada but they couldn’t because of the global lockdown. And now all they have left is an expired CoPR, they can neither fly with that nor are they fully convinced about restarting their life in India, what are they supposed to do?
Canada assured these people that their PR (Permanent Residency) will not be cancelled and that they will be informed about the due process to fly when the situation improves. They were assured that they will be able to continue with their original plan eventually. Now, it has been 9 months since it happened and thousands of people are contacting Canada every day to inform them that they are ready to fly and what they get in response is an automated reply acknowledging their emails and then the dreadful silence. Why is the Canadian government not extending the validity of their expired CoPR, why are they not generating a bulk extension, why are they putting added strain to those who have been surviving without jobs for almost a year now?
People are reaching whoever they can to let the Canadian government see their predicament, to let them know about what they were assured about their expiring or expired Copr, to accentuate how difficult life can be when you don’t have a job for more than 9 months and how survival becomes almost impossible. Can you imagine how hopeless it feels when you do not know where your life is going because you are neither fully a part of the country of your origin and the country that has invited you to become a citizen doesn’t care about your pain either?
Despite several attempts to reach the people in right places, not just Indians but everyone who had received PR from Canada is swinging like a pendulum, not knowing when or if they will be able to relocate, whether they should start looking for a job in the country of their current residence, whether they should again buy everything (from a needle to a house) that one needs for survival because Canada can’t care less about the people who are stuck with an expired CoPR (Confirmation of Permanent Residency).
They say, India is a country where life isn’t valued, where people are not treated fairly, or decently, where safety is scarce. But in my view, if this is the value Canada has for human life then my suggestion to fellow Indians with expired CoPR is to stay in India only. These are the people who dared to dream, who altered their life’s path to relocate, who paid the Canadian government to acquire PR and then quit jobs and left everything they had to start afresh in Canada and what did they get in return? Obscure answers, royal ignorance and zero value for life along with an expired CoPR!
Canada was supposed to be their safe haven, a place where they wanted to earn respect, status and a livelihood. Another important fact that cannot be disregarded is that these are highly skilled individuals, who have studied hard and made a status for them, which is also why Canada invited them to apply. Canada needs these future citizens to run their country, if they cannot value them, they don’t deserve them either. I guess it is better for people with expired CoPR to completely reject Canada and continue their life wherever they are. No, this won’t change Canada’s perspective, but this would certainly mean that you respect your credentials enough to reject a country that doesn’t value your accomplishments and skills.