Bengal Chief Minister Writes To Javadekar On UGC Fellowships
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Saturday said she has written to Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar and urged for the resumption of non-NET fellowships that were discontinued by the UGC for M.Phil and Ph.D. scholars. Ms Banerjee's move comes in the wake of concerns by varsity students over the termination of the fellowship scheme.
"During the course of my interactions with university students in administrative review meetings in the districts, they brought to my notice the great distress caused to them due to stoppage of non-National Eligibility Test Fellowship Scheme for M.Phil and Ph.D scholars by the University Grants Commission.
Many researchers do not have money to pay even their hostel/mess fees/bills, and some even face the prospect of abandoning their dreams of pursuing research," she said in a Facebook post.
"Moreover, I am told, release of funds by the UGC under NET-Junior Research Fellowships is erratic or delayed at times, causing uncertainty and distress to the recipients," she said.
The Trinamool Congress supremo said: "Aspirations for higher education are rising. In the larger interest of research, and on behalf of the vast research scholar community in my state and other states, I have already written to the HRD Minister to re-start non-NET Fellowships for M.Phil and Ph.D. scholars."
Ms Banerjee said the state government will allocate Rs 20 crore from the Rs 200 crore Swami Vivekananda Merit-cum-Means Scholarship for the research scholars.
"We are allocating Rs 20 crore to provide non-NET fellowship to research scholars admitted to M.Phil/Ph.D courses through a fair and transparent selection process," she added.
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