Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia has mooted this proposal in a "conceptual note" circulated to Secretaries of scientific departments of the government.
Government plans to roll out a red carpet to attract top Indian scientists working abroad to spend some time in institutions. As per the plans, such "very high quality" scientists would be offered an annual remuneration of USD 1,00,000 (approx Rs 55 lakh) in addition to fully furnished accommodation and relocation expenses for a minimum of one and upto three years in India.
According to report, Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia has mooted this proposal in a "conceptual note" circulated to Secretaries of scientific departments of the government. He has called a meeting of Secretaries of science department to discuss the proposal to set up new 'National Jawaharlal Nehru Science Fellowships', as the scheme is to be called.
A note circulated by the Plan panel said, The fellowships would be "offered to selected scientists who have achieved a degree of international distinction in areas of scientific research that correspond to our national priorities." The selected candidates could be approached to ascertain their interest in taking up the fellowship which could be for a minimum of one year and upto three years.
Officials said China had implemented a similar scheme and had succeeded in attracting over 1,000 of their scientists working abroad to return to their homeland for varying periods of time. Once selected, scientists may be given an option to take up the fellowship at a time of their choosing but within three years of their selection. The note said that injecting top class scientists into our institutions would have many advantages in terms of a positive impact on research and also motivate younger scientists.
The note said that a set of national institutions keen to host such scientists could be pre-selected on the basis of quality. These professors would not be on the staff of the institutions and would be paid for directly by the Centre.