The Indian Institutes of Technology have to wait longer before they could recruit foreign faculty on permanent basis as Home Ministry has stalled appointments. The premier institutes will not be able to recruit even candidates with Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) cards that give them most economic rights available to the Indian citizens.
Although HRD ministry has given nod to the hiring of foreign faculty but home ministry has said that hiring even OCI card holders — as IIT, Delhi, was doing — is against the Citizenship Act of 1955, in the absence of a special government order sources said.
“It is a setback…and although we expect to sort this out within the government, it has embarrassed IIT, Delhi. It could also end up hurting all the other IITs since foreign faculty — already wary of Indian bureaucracy — may now rethink whether they want to come to the IITs,” a senior official said.
Now, MHRD will take up the issue with the home ministry and the ministry of external affairs (MEA) to try and obtain an in-principle approval from them for the appointment of foreign faculty at the IITs, sources added.
“Instead of case-by-case approvals, we want to try and get the home ministry and the MEA agreed to our plan as a general principle, to avoid repeated embarrassments of this nature,” a source said.
Earlier, the IIT Council — the highest decision making body of the IITs — headed by HRD minister Kapil Sibal agreed to the proposal and decided to allow the Institutes to fill up to 10 % of their permanent teaching posts with foreign faculty.
But early in 2011, the MEA raised objections refusing to liberalise visa norms to allow foreigners to hold permanent jobs in India. However, later on it allowed faculty to be hired on a five-year contract which can be renewed.
[Source: Hindustan Times]