In an attempt to bring Indian researchers and scientists abroad together for conducting joint researches in India, Department of Science and Technology (DST) launched VAJRA on Thursday.
"Visiting Advanced Joint Research Faculty (VAJRA)" web portal was launched by Harsh Vadhan, Minister of Science and Technology. While launching it, he said it would aim at boosting research work and enabling new and cutting-edge technologies that India now needs. According to IANS, he said,
Under this scheme, scientists or senior researchers abroad—of Indian origin or otherwise—can collaborate with faculties here.
Under VAJRA, foreign researchers can also take part and the endowments would be at par with what they receive in their respective countries. The area that the scientists would be encouraged to research is energy health, among other areas. They will work as adjunct faculties in the government-funded research and academic institutions. Talking about the scheme's importance, Secretary of DST, Professor Ashutosh Sharma told IANS,
Science has no boundaries or different perspectives based on region... it's rather universal. The idea of the scheme is to bring the best of the world to India and conduct research here.
The grant for the faculties for the first month of their residency would be $15,000 and for the remaining months, the grant they receive would be $10,000. The period of research could be from one to three months and the scheme is aligned with the central government’s repeated insistence on brain gain instead of brain drain. According to PTI, Harsh Vadhan said,
Indian scientists abroad are feeling optimistic that with the new government in power, they will have top class facilities and a very conducive environment.
The number of scientists who can take part in the programme can be a maximum of 1,000. It is noteworthy to mention that Ramanujan Fellowship is being provided by the Indian government for Indian students and doctors working abroad for five years.