DST hikes JRF, SRF, PhD fellowship stipends; mixed reactions from scholars

The JRF fellowship stipend has been increased by 19% and SRF by 20%. Scholars have mixed reactions to the hike in stipends.

DST PhD research fellowship stipend hiked. (Image: Freepik)DST PhD research fellowship stipend hiked. (Image: Freepik)

Anu Parthiban | June 22, 2023 | 02:54 PM IST

NEW DELHI: The Department of Science and Technology (DST) today announced a hike in fellowship stipend for Junior Research Fellowship (JRF), Senior Research Fellowship (SRF) and for all three-levels of research associates. Scholars have mixed reactions to the revised fellowship stipends. Notably, the PhD scholars have been demanding for a hike in stipend since last August.

The DST in a tweet said, “Govt. has approved enhancing emoluments for JRF/SRF/RAs engaged in R&D activities whereby they will receive following fellowships/month w.e.f 01/01/2023.”

The scholars will get the following amounts, as per the revised fellowship stipend.

JRF - Rs 37,000

SRF - Rs 42,000

Research Associate 1 - Rs 58,000

Research Associate -2 - Rs 61,000

Research Associate -3 - Rs 63,000

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The fellowship stipend was last revised in 2019 for research personnel engaged in R&D programme of central government departments and agencies. Compared to 2019, the JRF stipend has been increased by 19% and SRF by 20%. While RA-1 and RA-2 stipends have been increased by 23% and 24% respectively, RA-3 got 16% hike in stipend.

Fellowship

Earlier

2019

2023

JRF

Rs 25,000

Rs 31,000

Rs 37,000

SRF

Rs 28,000

Rs 35,000

Rs 42,000

RA-1

Rs 36,000

Rs 47,000

Rs 58,000

RA-2

Rs 38,000

Rs 49,000

Rs 61,000

RA-3

Rs 40,000

Rs 54,000

Rs 63,000

While several scholars welcomed the move, many expressed their disappointment by comparing the stipend received in the US. “JRF fellowships pay Rs 4.2L/year tax free which is 1.5x per capita income. Contrast this to the US where the typical PhD stipend $24K is ~ 0.33x per capita income. Not sure what to make of it,” a Twitter user said.

On the other hand, another PhD candidates on Twitter said, “The hike is low, many are complaining, & demanding a minimum of 60k stipend for #JRF. In a pay system where fresh faculty recruits get paid ~80k per month, can a JRF really be given 60k stipend? Such an increase would need a complete overhaul.”

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