Living at Rs 25,000 per month Stipend, JIPMER PhD scholars protest for hike
Puducherry: PhD Research scholars at the premier, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER) are facing a tough time since their salaries have not been increased as promised; leading to financial difficulties for the last few years.
Protesting against the agony faced by many such scholars in different educational institutions, Research Scholars of India Forum started their strike on January 16. The forum is on protest since then; demanding for an 80% hike in fellowship stipends and quicker disbursement of research funds. They urged the Union Government for the implementation of the key demand.
Recently, the Research Scholars attached with JIPMER supported the forum’s protest by taking out a silent rally.
Researchers with the Junior Research Fellowship (JRF), a coveted fellowship offered by the CSIR; get Rs 25,000 each.
As of now, the Centre extends scholarship of Rs 25,000 per month (for the first 2 years and Rs 28,000 per month for the next 3 years of the research programme) in addition with rent allowance of Rs 5,000 per month to Research Scholars in the central and state government institutions running all across the country.
Speaking to the media, JIPMER Research Scholars shared that they are facing several difficulties on the monetary front as the fellowship amount has been stagnant for almost 5 years.
Saying that with no hike in stipend since 2014 and inflation rising rapidly, they were hard-pressed to fulfil even the basic necessities of their families, the protesting Scholars stated to the Hindu, “Although the Ministry of Human Resource Development had acknowledged these demands and had promised to fulfil them within a certain time-frame, no action had followed.”
During their silent protest, the scholars demanded the Centre to hike the scholarship to Rs 45,000 per month (80% hike) and hike the rent allowance accordingly. They also urged the Centre to disburse scholarship every month without any delay. They urged the Union human resource development ministry to evolve a mechanism for a timely and hassle-free system for the periodical hike in fellowship every four years, adds TOI in its report.