Govt considering flexi pay packages to nurture talent in education: Javadekar

The govt is looking at giving flexible pay packages to faculty in the proposed 20 world class universities to nurture talent in the education field, says Javadekar.

education Updated: Jul 27, 2017 15:01 IST
PTI, New Delhi
Brain Drain,Flexible pay packages,Javadekar
Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar with Union Minister of State for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises Babul Supriyo during the ongoing monsoon session at Parliament, in New Delhi on Wednesday. (PTI)

The government is looking at giving flexible pay packages to faculty in the proposed 20 world class universities to nurture talent in the education field within the country, HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar said on Wednesday.

He was replying to an observation made by Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman PJ Kurien who pointed out that brilliant students in the country either migrate to other countries or choose to become administrative officers due to lack of support in term of remuneration.

“You should know that bright students, even those who come out of the engineering colleges, prefer to go outside the country or they go to IAS. What is the reason,” Kurien asked.

The observation came after Javadekar and Minister of State for HRD Mahendra Nath Pandey replied to a brief debate on the National Institutes of Technology, Science Education and Research (Amendment) Bill 2017.

Responding to Kurien’s query, Javadekar said: “Issue is very simple. We have already tracked the problem and we want to address it. Instead of bran drain, we will have brain gain in the years to come.”

Not content with the response, Kurien added: “The point is that scientists and IIT professors, they are intellectual cream of the society. They are not properly paid when compared with those in the administration.”

He further said: “You should put scientists at the top and they should not be subordinate to others. This is the basic problem in the country.”

To this, Javadekar said: “We are offering flexibility in packages and that we are offering in the 20 world class universities. So we will issue the guidelines.”

The University Grants Commission (UGC) had in February this year passed a new set of regulations to set up 20 world class institutions - 10 in public sector and 10 others in private sector.

Of the 20 universities, 10 state-supported institutions are expected to receive public funding of up to Rs 500 crore each.

HRD’s separate rules --UGC (Declaration of Educational Institutions as World Class Institutions) Guidelines-- also these institutes to fix their own fees for feeing students and decide salaries for foreign faculty, as well as freedom to choose admission procedures.

Existing universities don’t have much freedom and are guided by the detailed UGC rules. Javadekar also said that his ministry is trying to bring Indians who are teaching abroad back to the country.

The bill, passed by the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday, gives the status of national importance to the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) at Tirupati and Behrampur.

The bill has already been passed by the Lok Sabha on March 28 this year.

Earlier, during the discussion, various members raised the issue of large number of vacancies in the premier education institutes like IITs and NITs in the country.

On questions regarding raising of fees in the IITs and NITs, Javedekar said the government has actually reduced fee for people with income up to Rs 5 lakh.

For people in Rs 5-9 lakh income bracket, the government is offering interest-free loans and only with people having more than Rs 10 lakh income, the fee has gone up, he said.

Pandey said the government is working on measures to increase participation of girls in the engineering courses.

Harivansh of JDU, D Raja of CPI, Ritabrata Banerjee of CPI-M, AV Singh Deo of BJD, Rajaram of BSP, Vandana Chavan of NCP and Vijaysai Reddy of YSR Congress also participated in the discussion.

First Published: Jul 27, 2017 15:01 IST