IRISH and UK immigration authorities have set up a task force to deal with an increase in suspected fraudulent visa and asylum applications from Pakistani and Bangladeshi nationals.
Officials believe a British move to clamp down on student visas issued to nationals from the subcontinent has caused hundreds of Pakistani and Bangladeshi nationals to come to Ireland to apply for a visa or residency, allowing them to remain in the EU.
There was a 224% increase in the number of Pakistanis seeking asylum in Ireland between 2013 and 2014, up from 91 to 292. The number of Bangladeshis seeking asylum increased from 31 in 2013 to 99 last year.
The majority of those seeking asylum had visa histories in the UK.
Officials in the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service are concerned that more than 500 Pakistani nationals married EU nationals in Ireland last year, securing residency rights.
Ahsan Chatha, an