Jugaad is a Hindi term that roughly translates to “innovative fix” or “hack”. It’s a concept that is deeply ingrained in Indian culture and reflects the country’s tradition of finding creative solutions to problems. In India, people often have to make do with limited resources and infrastructure, so they rely on jugaad to find ways to get things done.
This approach has led to many ingenious solutions, such as using a bicycle to power a water pump or converting a scooter into a mobile food cart. Jugaad has become a source of pride for many Indians, who view it as a way to overcome adversity and achieve success through resourcefulness and ingenuity.
In a recent Jugaad scenario, Sunil Dhar must ensure that all his family members are in the correct country for his son’s wedding in Washington. However, the bride’s parents from Delhi require visitor visas to enter the United States, which has an almost year-long wait time in India.
To ensure that they attend the wedding, the family has devised an innovative solution, arranging for the guests to meet in a park near the Peace Arch monument on the US-Canada border.
The lengthy visa processing delays are causing significant issues for immigrants hoping to reunite with their loved ones in the United States, according to recent reports. Families are struggling to navigate the prolonged visa application process, leaving them unsure when they will finally be reunited with their family members.
This situation has become so dire that families are using innovative measures to ensure that their loved ones can attend important events, such as weddings.
According to NYTimes, Sunil Dhar is facing a unique challenge as he prepares for his younger son’s wedding this June. The family is from the San Francisco Bay Area, but the wedding is taking place in Blaine, Washington, near the Peace Arch monument that marks the border between the United States and Canada.
The bride’s parents, who live in Delhi, will be attending the wedding, but they cannot obtain visitor visas to enter the United States due to a wait time of nearly a year. The bride’s parents and other family members with Canadian visas will be able to enter the park from the northern half in British Columbia because the wedding will take place in the southern half of the park in Washington, which will alleviate the problem.
The southernmost point they can travel without having to present their identification and immigration papers is the parking lot on the US side. Sunil Dhar wants to avoid a repeat of the visa-related absences that occurred during his elder son’s wedding last year and ensure that his future daughter-in-law’s family is present at the wedding, stating that it is a memory that lasts a lifetime.
According to a report by India Times, the United States is facing a visa backlog of a record-breaking 500,000 applications, causing wait times for some applicants to stretch to several years.
The situation is causing emotional distress and financial setbacks for families worldwide who are uncertain about when they will be able to see their elderly parents again. Frustrated immigrants are taking to social media to vent their anger with hashtags like #VisaBacklog and #EndTheBacklog becoming popular.
This problem is not exclusive to India; applicants from Brazil and Mexico must also wait more than a year, while Colombian applicants must wait until 2025. With approximately 2.4 million visitor visas issued to nationals of these countries in 2019, these countries were among the top sources of foreign visitors to the US.
Despite the decrease in international visitor numbers due to the pandemic, Brazil, India, Mexico, and Colombia are experiencing the worst delays in obtaining visitor visas.