Govt. to fund 'pure science' scholars' for post doctoral research in India

In order to stop the ongoing brain drain in India, the government has recently launched the National Post Doctoral Fellowship to fund all the science scholars holding a PhD degree so as to help them pursue their post-doctoral research in India.

According to Department of Science and Technology, Secretary, Ashutosh Sharma, this fellowship was started last month and under this scheme it has been decided that this fellowship would finance around 1000 scholars by this year end.

Moreover, he said, all the scholars will be paid a basic funding of Rs 7 lakhs per year for doing research and Rs 50,000 per month for a time period of three years.

He also said, "We have found that the scholars are more vulnerable to go abroad after their PhD degree because this is the time they don't get full-time employment since many institutes ask for a post-doctoral degree. There are many universities and institutes abroad that offer the PhDs graduates with post-doctoral opportunities. This is why we have embarked upon this scheme."

"Once they get a post-doctoral fellowship in India for three-years, they can continue with their research and get prepared for a job in Indian institutes and universities. Once they bag a job, the chances of their going abroad is less," he added.

Recently, it has come into notice that the Ministry of Science and Technology is not having accurate figures of Indian scholars who are working across the world.

Meanwhile, a senior ministry official said, "There are two reasons behind it. It is difficult to track the students who leave India for studies at different levels (say, under-graduate, graduate and post-graduate). More importantly, there is also no tracking of students coming back.

"Secondly, neither the Ministry of Home Affairs or the Ministry of External Affairs have maintained data related to this."

Further, all the scholars who are taking up this scholarship, need to send a research proposal. Before applying, it is compulsory that the university where the scholar will take admission has to accept the proposal, said Ashutosh Sharma.

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