Two reputable universities in the United States, Harvard and M.I.T, have filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration over a directive that would strip foreign students of their visas, if their coursework was entirely online, the New York Times reported.
On Monday night, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced that foreign students who are pursuing degrees in the U.S.
will have to leave the country or risk deportation if their universities switch to online-only courses.
The new visa rule received wide criticisms. While many kicked against what they considered an aggressive and inhumane immigration policy, some described it as an effort to pressure universities into reopening despite daily rise in coronavirus cases in the U.S.
The two universities announced on Wednesday that they are suing Mr Trump for his ‘reckless’ directive on striping foreign students of their visas without a due process.
Harvard’s president, Lawrence Bacow, said in a message to the university community that the order came down without notice — “its cruelty surpassed only by its recklessness.”
“It appears that it was designed purposefully to place pressure on colleges and universities to open their on-campus classrooms for in-person instruction without regard to concerns for the health and safety of students, instructors, and others.”