RUSA grant: PU gets ₹50 cr for research
Quality of research work at varsity had deteriorated for want of funds; better outcomes, innovations expectedUpdated: Oct 02, 2019 00:40 IST
After missing out on funding under Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA) twice, Panjab University (PU) has finally got the approval for ₹50-crore grant under the ‘Research and Innovation’ component. The grant was accepted under the entrepreneurship, innovation and career hubs scheme by the ministry of human resource development (MHRD) at a meeting on September 9 at New Delhi.
After the launch of RUSA in 2013, PU was not issued any grant by MHRD during the first phase of the scheme. It was only in the second phase in 2018 that the university asked for grants worth ₹50 crore under the same component but was given only ₹5 crore for a girls’ hostel and for students belonging to the scheduled castes (SC) and scheduled tribes (ST), besides ₹7 crore for its Human Resource Development Centre (HRDC).
It is learnt that in the coming days PU will be formulating a project report to be sent to MHRD, which will release
Confirming the development PU registrar Karamjeet Singh said the university had sent a proposal to MHRD for grants, which had been approved.
Under the second phase of RUSA, MHRD aims to provide grants to about 20 universities in the country. On September 9, grants were approved for PU along with Maharshi Dayanand University of Rohtak and Jammu University. Funds for the other 17 universities across the nation had been approved earlier.
After the implementation of the first phase of RUSA on March 21, 2018, the Cabinet had approved continuation of RUSA 2.0. Phase-2 of the scheme is aimed at increasing spending of the states on higher education from 1% of Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) to 2% or above and to ensure all the state institutions are accredited by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) by the end of March 2020 as a part of the mandatory quality assurance framework.
“Out of the total grant, ₹35 crore will be used for research and quality improvement while the amount worth ₹15 crore will be used to form a hub of entrepreneurship and employability,” said a senior PU official.
The eligibility criteria for getting grants were that a university should have NAAC grade 1 or 2. PU was eligible to apply with NAAC grade 2.
This will be a breakthrough for PU as it has, according to authorities, not received adequate grants as it is both a state and Centrally funded university.
This has affected research, with the number of sponsored research projects and funding agencies declining in the last few years.
“PU has not received any major grant in recent years. Despite all odds, the university has been excelling in the field of research. Now, receiving the grant will boost our research and will also help in improving the overall ranking of the university,” said Rajat Sandhir, professor of biochemistry.