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IELTS not holding water

Six students from India – all from the Mehsana district of Gujurat and aged between 19 and 21 – were arrested by US border authorities as they tried to cross from Canada into the United States via the Saint Regis River between Ontario and New York State in the Mohawk Nation’s Akwesasne territory. They were picked up in March as their boat began to sink.

What makes the case curious is that the young people, who were all in Canada on students visas, held documents that claimed they had achieved high IELTS scores of between 6.5 and 7, but when they were brought before a judge in court to hear their case, none of them were able to speak a word of English.

Earlier this month, the US authorities asked the Gujurat police to look into the potential fraud of IELTS testing centres in Gujurat, as the suspicion is that the tests are not being taken by the students, but most likely by paid exam-sitters so that the students can falsely obtain student visas for Canada and then be snuck into the US. This hypothesis has been given further weight because, when Inspector Bhavesh Rathod of the Mehsana police looked into the company who ran the exams, it was discovered that the CCTV cameras in the centre had been turned off when the test took place last September.

Image courtesy of Shujon Moral from Pixabay
Liz Granirer
Liz Granirer
Liz has been a journalist for many years. She is currently editor of EL Gazette and has previously edited the magazines Young Performer, StepForward and Accounting Technician; been deputy editor on Right Start magazine; chief sub editor on Country Homes & Interiors; and sub editor on easyJet Traveller, Lonely Planet and Family Traveller magazines, along with a number of others.
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