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IIT Roorkee not to hire its PhD students as faculty members

NEW DELHI: Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee will not be hiring its own PhD students as faculty members on completion of their course despite their academic and research credentials.

“We are not open to hiring our own PhD students as faculty members and would prefer to hire best faculty from across the country and the globe. Hiring your own students is like marrying in your own family,” IIT Roorkee Director Ajit Kumar Chaturvedi told PTI.

“It is a very regressive practice as somebody who has studied here only will not get fresh ideas as their umbilical cord will never be broken. He or she will have seniors and teachers to support and guide so the person will never develop an individuality despite his academic and research credentials,” he added.

The premier institute, however, is welcoming its BTech students to pursue PhD on completion of their engineering degrees. It also plans to hire more foreign faculty members as the government has relaxed norms for hiring foreign faculty in IITs.

“There are foreign faculty members in IITs right now as well, but they are just a handful because of stringent government norms. However, the norms are getting relaxed now to let us hire more foreign nationals,” Chaturvedi said.

Foreign faculty in IITs can work as contractual employees for five years. The contract is renewable and though they are not offered permanent positions, they get paid at par with faculty members in India.

After paving the way for direct admission of BTech students in PhD courses, the HRD Ministry has also come up with a Prime Minister’s Research fellowship under which Selected PhD fellows at receive Rs 75,000 per month but will have to return the entire amount if they leave the course midway. The scheme, however, is yet to get the Cabinet nod.