Hyderabad: Social media communities created by students studying in central universities in Hyderabad are abuzz with posters, trolls and messages against the University Grants Commission. This is due to the UGC’s decision to scrap fellowships from next year, which were being given till this year to every PhD and M.Phil. student in central universities who could not secure Junior Research Fellowships.
Students are worried that this move might affect ambitions of students from weak economic backgrounds to pursue research. PhD student Quadir Siddiquee of Maulana Azad National Urdu University said, “The non-NET fellowship by University Grants Commission is an economic backbone and gives confidence to many students in Manuu who are pursuing M.Phil. and PhD because of their weak economic backgrounds. There is actually a need to hike the fellowship.”
A PhD student from the University of Hyderabad receiving the non-NET scholarship said, “For those with an aim of pursuing a career in research but who are under pressure to get jobs soon after PG, the non-NET fellowship is encouraging. The University Grants Commission’s decision to disallow it for M.Phil. and PhD students from next year will discourage such students from taking up research.”
On Friday, the University of Hyderabad’s Students Union held a protest in solidarity with the students protesting in New Delhi against the scrapping of the non-NET fellowships. Zuhail K.P., students’ union president said, “Non-NET fellowship is a right of students. We will protest till the decision is revoked. We will bring together students and will also protest outside the University Grants Commission office in Hyderabad if we need to.”
The non-NET fellowships for those who took admissions till this year are Rs 5,000 per month for M.Phil. and Rs 8,000 per month for PhD students in all central universities....