The administration of the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh has decided to withdraw an order that restricted the number of research projects for doctors.
On April 30, Hindustan Times had reported that the PGIMER administration had issued a circular among all departments that a faculty member could not take up more than three research projects at one point in time as principal investigator.
Faculty and doctors at the institute had then reacted strongly to the circular, claiming that the decision would hit research activities at the institute. The Faculty Association of the institute had also opposed the move.
Sources in the PGIMER administration said that the decision to annul the previous circular was conveyed to the faculty of the institute in a meeting held on May 10. The meeting was attended by various senior faculty members and dean Dr Amod Gupta was chaired by the director Dr YK Chawla.
“After deliberations, it was decided to withdraw the present circular restricting the number of projects. The same should be communicated to the institute Ethics Committee,” the minutes of the meeting state.
The institute administration has also requested the committee — which recommended restricting the projects to three — to review the recommendations in the light of discussions at the meeting.
Significantly, a committee under the chairmanship of Dr S Varma, head, department of inter nal medicine had recommended the cap, after he was asked to make a policy by the director.
Interestingly one of the members of the above mentioned committee also had around 35 projects in hand.
Doctors at the PGIMER receive funding from sources such as the department of science and technology, the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) among others to carry out medical research, in the form of projects.
In 2013, the PGIMER produced around 1,200 research papers and attracted around 19 crore as grants for various research projects.