The Gujarat government under chief minister Anandi Patel, has scrapped all scholarships for undergraduate students existing in the state since 1965, to introduce a single “Chief Minister’s Scholarship”.
The new scholarship will also cover children of Members of Legislative Assembly (MLAs), Members of Parliament (MPs) and ministers, who did not qualify, in the earlier scholarships,
Doing away with all the existing scholarships since 1965 including those funded by the state as well as the central government for undergraduate students in Gujarat, the ‘Chief Minister Scholarship’ is applicable from the 2014-15 academic session.
This new scholarship was launched by Patel’s predecessor and now prime minister Narendra Modi on March 3, 2014 (just before the Lok Sabha elections) to which Patel and her team have made amendments and revisions, releasing a fresh circular on its implementation, on July 23.
Another major decision the Patel government took was to strike off students studying in premier institutes outside Gujarat including National Institute of Design (NID), Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Indian Institute of Information Technology (IIIT), National Defence Academy (NDA), Armed Forces Medical College (AFMC), All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Film and TV Institute, Pune , from the list of eligible. The GR of March 3 under the Modi government had specifically mentioned and covered these students, while the new GR has no mention of this category. One of the scholarships scrapped is the ” Jawaharlal Nehru University New Delhi Research Scholarship ”
Though there is no change in the amount of financial benefits under this scholarship, an amendment of scholarship on education loan to scholarship on annual tuition fee has been incorporated. Removing the clause of ineligibility for the wards of certain professions including MLAs, MPs and ministers that was a part of the original Government Resolution (GR), being one of such amendments.
Other professions which were originally excluded as beneficiaries from this scheme included engineers, doctors, chartered accountants, lawyers, architects, contractors under “B” or higher grade, Class II and above officials of central government, state government, nationalised banks, LIC, etc.
“After reviewing various scholarship schemes, education department under state government has cancelled all scholarship schemes and started a new well integrated schol
arship scheme ‘Chief Minister Scholarship scheme’ through March 3,2014 Government Resolution. Considering various suggestions and representations received pertaining to bank loan, professions, limitation of salary and class by the education department for the implementation of this scheme, it became necessary to re-consider this GR,” stated the GR issued on July 23.
Further it stated that during the presentation given to the Chief Minister and after detailed discussion with the senior officials of the education department and after carefully reviewing in order to provide financial help to bright needy undergraduate students and a streamlined impelmentation of this scheme it was felt necessary to cancel the GR of March 3,2014,
Under this scheme, students whose parents’ annual income is upto Rs 4.5 lakh
and have Gujarat domicility and cleared Class XII from Gujarat Secondary and Higher Secondary Education Board (GSHSEB) or other recognized board from Gujarat, and featuring in the top four percentile (above 96 percentile score) in Science stream and top one percentile (above 99 percentile score) in general stream can apply for this scholarship.
Earlier, students pursuing undergraduate courses and have cleared Class XII from GSHSEB or any other recognised board from Gujarat with a family annual income upto Rs 4.5 lakh and has taken an annual taken loan for tuition fee then 50 per cent of this loan amount or Rs 50,000, whichever is lower would be re-imbursed as scholarship under the scheme. The revenue officer or Taluka Development Officer (TDO) are authorised to issue income certificate for beneficiaries.
This has been now replaced with 50 per cent of the annual tuition fee or Rs 50,000 for students pursuing graduation from self financed institutes. While, for medical students, Rs 2 lakh or 50 per cent of the annual tuition fee, whichever is lower. This would be directly deposited in students’ bank accounts.
Along with this, the revised GR includes 500 scholarships reserved for female students with 75 per cent and above marks in Class XII from 50 taluka with female literacy rate below 50 per cent, irrespective of the family income bracket of Rs 4.5 lakh per annum. Further categorisation as per streams have been done for these 500 scholarships-150 reserved for girls completed Class XII with Medical stream, 50 for Non Medical and 300 for general stream.
For children of martyrs or those of died of any other cause in service, wards of military, para-military forces, state police personnel the annual income bracket will not be considered but the Class XII result which is 75 per cent and above.
Similarly, for Scheduled Tribe (ST), Scheduled Caste (SC), Socially and Educationally backward (SEBC) and Physically Handicapped (PH) students the number of scholarship would be equal to the percent reserved during admission under these categories with a relaxation of 5 per relaxation in the Class XII percentile.
Further, this scholarship will also cover students under SC and ST categories but are above Rs 2.5 lakh annual income and thus not eligible for the post matric scholarship scheme of the central government.