Non-NET fellowships to continue, says government

New Delhi, Oct 25 (IANS) In relief to students protesting over scrapping of non-national eligibility test (NET) stipends, the central government on Sunday announced all existing scholarships would continue and set up a committee to look into the issues of research scholars.

“The review committee will submit a report to the human resource ministry by December. Irrespective of its recommendations, all existing and continuing fellowships, NET as well as non-NET, would be continued; there will be no retrospective change,” the ministry said in a statement.

Protesting against the decision to discontinue non-NET fellowship, hundreds of students from various educational institutions, including Jawaharlal Nehru University, University of Delhi, Jamia Millia Islamia and Ambedkar University, were camping at the University Grants Commission (UGC) office at ITO here since Wednesday. They vacated the venue on Friday evening.

The protestors wanted the UGC to not only restore the scholarship but also increase fellowship amount. Under the present structure, students pursuing M.Phil. from a central university are entitled to Rs.5,000 per month and PhD scholars Rs.8,000.

The UGC introduced the non-NET fellowship in 2006 to encourage research in the universities.

About 35,000 students are presently availing of these fellowships.

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