Bengaluru: Studying abroad, especially in the United States and UK, is a dream of many students and families in India. The rising in income levels of burgeoning Indian middle-class post-liberalisation has allowed more students to go abroad, which was earlier the preserve of only rich families.
Even the policies of central and state governments and easier education loans have paved way for Indian students to study abroad.
According to recent reports from the Union Ministry of External Affairs, an estimated 5.53 lakh Indian students are studying in 86 different countries. Of these countries, the US, Canada and Australia are the most preferred with nearly two-thirds studying there. 50 per cent of the students study in North America.
As India is attracting a number of multi-national companies and foreign direct investment in key sectors like science, technology, engineering and management, majority of Indian students prefer to study abroad and come back for better job opportunities, experts said.
In recent years, countries like Canada, Australia, Germany and Ireland too are attracting Indian students through favourable immigration policies, permanent residency, attractive work policies and scholarships, said Amit Dasgupta, former Indian Consul General to Sydney.
On the other hand, India which has premier scientific research institutions, like the Indian Institute of Science, Indian Institutes of Management, Indian Institutes of Technology and several other reputed private universities, the country has attracted only 47,427 foreign students, according to a recent report of the All Indian Survey of Higher Education (AISHE). Majority of these students are from Nepal, Afghanistan, Nigeria, Sudan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Yemen, United States and Sri Lanka.
But neighbouring China has attracted over five lakh foreign students to study in its universities.
Though Indian students study in 32 different countries from Europe, they only make up 52,116. More than 90,000 students studies in Asia as well as Australia.
Despite India having cold relations with China, over 23,000 students are studying in Chinese Universities, and interestingly, over 21,000 have enrolled for MBBS courses....