The Department of Immigration and Border Protection has cancelled about 27,000 visas in the first six months of the financial year of 2017. The news about the cancellation was told by secretary of the department Michael Pezzullo. The exact reasons for the cancellation have not been told yet though authorities have said that there are a number of reasons behind this. Earlier in the years December 2014 and December 2016, a total 2000 number of visas were cancelled on the grounds of character of visa holders and another set of around 820 visa applications were rejected on similar issues related to character of applicants.
Talking about the visa cancellations , secretary of the department Michael Pezzullo said that they also found many cases of unlawful citizens and illegal workers whose quantum were 8000 and 1000 respectively. Many of these voluntarily approached the department for solution to their visa status. Shedding some light on the drastic decision, he said that the department is now looking at employing people who can provide more efficiency so that the number of officers can be decreased.
“In the face of resource constraints and increasing border flows, investment in modernisation in crucial, this means increased automation, such as next generation of smart gates, harnessing new digital technologies to improve our client services, improving our abilities to collect and analyse big data to produce actionable intelligence there from,” said Mr Pezzullo.
Among the reasons for visa cancellation was that Australia is focusing on right now to bring peace in the country. Many visas were rejected on grounds of illegal activities and criminal and violence acts being committed by the visa holders. The Border Force commissioner Roman Quaedvlieg said that ABF is working with law enforcement agencies to find out the people who are causing nuisance and are non-citizens. These would include those involved in gang violence and other types of criminal activities. The Victoria Police has already cancelled visas of atleast 6 members of notorious Apex Gang which is suspected to be responsible for several criminal activities in Melbourne. 138 members of motorcycle gangs (outlawed) also had their visas either cancelled or refused.
Last year as well, the department had cancelled around 60,000 visas. Among these one fourth were charged for overstaying in Australia.
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