PMRF Scheme reformed to facilitate more researchers for boosting research in the country, Research and Innovation Division set up by MHRD

To boost research in the country various amendments have been carried out in Prime Minister’s Research Fellowship Scheme (PMRF Scheme) including creation of a dedicated Division in the ministry of HRD with the name of “Research and Innovation Division”. This division will be headed by a director who will be coordinating   research work of various institutions coming under MHRD.

In another major reform, now for the students from any recognised institute/ university (other than IISc/ IITs/NITs/IISERs/IIEST/CF IIITs), the requirement of GATE Score is reduced to 650 from 750 apart from minimum CGPA of 8 or equivalent.

 Candidates will be selected through a rigorous selection process and their performance will be reviewed suitably through a national convention. Starting Academic Year 2020-21, candidates can apply for PMRF through either  direct entry channel or lateral entry channel.

Further, now onwards there will be two channels of entries, one direct entry and lateral entry. In lateral entry, the students, who are pursuing PhD in PMRF granting institutions (completed 12 months or 24 months as per certain requirements) can also apply to become fellow under the scheme as per new guidelines.

NITs, which appear in top 25 institutions as per NIRF Ranking (overall) can also become PMRF Granting institution.

 The HRD Minister has hoped that  the modifications will enable more students to avail of the benefit under the Prime Minister’s Research Fellowship Scheme. “With attractive fellowships, the scheme seeks to attract the best talent into research thereby realizing the vision of development through innovation,” he added.

DIRECT ENTRY CHANNEL

To apply for PMRF through this channel, the candidate must satisfy all of the following criteria: 

  1.  In the preceding three years, the candidate should have either: (i) completed or be pursuing the final year of Bachelors or Masters degree in Science and Technology streams from any of the Institute/University recognized in India with CGPA of 8.0 or above and GATE score of 650 or above in the relevant subject (the GATE criteria is waived if the qualifying degree is from one of the centrally funded technical institutes), or, (ii) qualified GATE and completed or be pursuing M.Tech./MS by research at one of the PMRF Granting Institutes having a minimum CGPA of 8.0 or above at the end of the first semester with a minimum of four courses. 
  2. They apply and get selected in the Ph.D. programme in one of the PMRF granting institutes. 
  3. The PMRF granting institute, which has admitted the student in the Ph.D. programme through the regular selection process (interveiw), makes a strong recommendation for award of PMRF in view of his/her merit. The metrics on which the candidates will be judged will include (but not restricted to): research exposure, publications, performance in international academic competitions, grades and recommendation letters.

LATERAL ENTRY CHANNEL

To apply for PMRF through this channel, the candidate must satisfy all of the following criteria:

  1.  The candidate should be pursuing Ph.D. in one of the PMRF granting institutions. Further, he/she should have completed at most 12 months in the PhD programme if he/she joined the programme with a Master’s degree; and should have completed at most 24 months in the PhD programme if he/she joined the PhD programme with a Bachelor’s degree. He/she should have completed at least four courses in the PhD programme with CGPA / CPI of 8.5 or above. 
  2. The PMRF Granting Institute, in which the student is enrolled, makes a strong recommendation for the candidate and uploads the relevant information on the PMRF web-portal, in view of his/her merit clearly demonstrated during the first 12-24 months (as relevant) of the program;
  • The metrics on which the candidates will be judged include (but not restricted to) a strong research proposal, publications record and grades. Due weightage should be given to publication in reputed journals/conferences.