BHUBANESWAR: The Odisha Government has slashed the post-matric scholarship given to meritorious ST and SC students in at least 15 courses including, BTech and MBA, even as it has increased the number of courses to be covered under the programme from existing 27 to 99 in the 2020-21 academic session.
As per the resolution of ST and SC development department, an eligible student of ST or SC community will get `25,000 scholarship for BTech course in the new academic session. The scholarship for the course was `60,000 in the previous academic sessions.
Similarly, a meritorious diploma student of any of these two communities will get a scholarship of only `3,500 against `26,500 in the previous years. The scholarship amount has been reduced to `25,000 against previous year’s `66,000 for MTech, `65,000 for MBA, `45,000 for Hotel Management and `40,000 for MCA.
Similarly, scholarships for BSc Nursing, MSc Nursing, General Nursing, Auxiliary Nursing, BCA, BBA, DMLT and DMRT which were in the range of `30,000 to ` 60,000 have also been slashed and kept in the range of `12,000 to `30,000. However, no change has been made to the MBBS scholarship as it continues to remain `5.5 lakh in the new academic session. Besides, meritorious students will get `2,000 and `2,500 scholarships for general courses in Plus II and Plus III respectively.
A number of courses such as LLB, LLM, Journalism, Commerce, PGDM, Performing Arts, PG Ayurvedic and Homeopathy and BSc and MSc disciplines have been included in the scholarship programme from this academic calendar. The maintenance allowance given to these students has also remained the same.
Any student from these communities willing to pursue higher education in any government and government-recognised private college and institution are entitled for the scholarship if their family income is below `2.5 lakh per annum. The Odisha Private Engineering College Association, meanwhile, has strongly criticised the State government for reducing the scholarship for engineering degrees and other courses in the middle of a pandemic.