H4 to F1 visa stamping in India

I am currently on H4 visa in US and enrolling for MS course in a reputed university for Fall 2015. I’ll be starting the education on H4 visa itself. I also have plans for India travel in Late Dec15-Jan16 after the completion of 1st semester on H4. I am in a dilemma about when to apply for the F1 visa.

  • Is it safe to apply for the cos to F1 here in US itself in Aug which should get approved in 3-4 months, travel to India on F1 cos and get the stamping done there ? What are the risks involved in it ?

  • Or is it better to complete the 1st semester, travel to India on H4, apply for F1 stamping there? What are the risks involved in it ?In how much time do we get the decision in India whether the F1 visa got approved or rejected.

  • I believe the safest option is to go and come back on H4 visa itself and then apply for the cos from here . But this way I won’t be able to work on-campus in 2nd semester also and the CPT internship might also get delayed based on when do I receive the approved cos.

Please suggest with which option should I go.

You should apply for F1 in India. A rejection means nothing, you can simply travel back on the valid H4. A COS brings about a compulsory change in your status and future travel will require a stamped visa. That is not the case presently.