Indians can now apply online for visitor visas to Australia
Starting July 1, Indians will be able to apply online for a visitor visa for Australia.
Australia's Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Alex Hawke, said it would make the whole process much easier.
There has been a spike in demand for visas for Australia; during January-April'17, 65,000 visitor visas were issued to Indian nationals.
How will it benefit applicants?
The development is expected to help "applicants seeking to visit Australia as tourists or business visitors, or those wanting to reconnect with family and friends".
Applicants will now be able to apply, electronically pay for and track the progress of the application.
With online applications, the duration of the process is also expected to be shorter and completed faster.
Australia has emerged as popular destination for Indians
This comes after several complaints were lodged against inordinate delays in visa processing.
Currently, Indians can apply online for Sponsored Family Visitor, Student, Temporary Work, Training, Temporary Activity, Partner, Prospective Marriage, Resident Return and Maritime Crew visas.
Australia has emerged as a popular destination for Indians. In 2013-14, there were 164,219 visa applications by Indians. By 2016-17, it has risen to 228,331.