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[T]he Training Division, Department of Personnel and Training , Government of India has been sponsoring the Scheme of 'Partial Funding of Foreign Study', as a component of the Plan Scheme of 'Domestic Funding of Foreign Training' (DFFT). The Competent Authority has approved certain amendments to the Scheme, and, accordingly revised circular has been drawn up, incorporating such amendments, and in supersession of the earlier circular(s) governing the Scheme.
Salient features of the Scheme
I. Conditions of eligibility:
(i) All Group 'A' Officers of the Government of India, who have completed at least 9 years of service in the grade and having at least 8 years of service left for superannuation, are eligible to apply under the Scheme;
(ii) An officer can avail of the Scheme only once in his/her entire career;
(iii) An officer who has availed of 'study leave' in the past will also be eligible;
(iv) An officer who has been on long term foreign training may become eligible under the scheme only after a cooling off of 5 years;
(v) The officer should not have any departmental proceedings pending or contemplated against him/her, and there should be no standing adverse entry in the ACRs of the officer.
II. Type of foreign study programmes covered under the Scheme:
The foreign study programme should be in an area that is directly related to his/her career in the government. This, however, needn't be linked only to his/her present assignment but also be linked to possible future assignments. Funding for the programme may be considered for Post Graduation, Ph.D. and all regular MBA courses being undertaken by the officers of Group 'A' Services.
III. Institutes for which the eligible applicants would be supported:
(i) Financial support may be extended to officers, who secure admission for a study programme in the foreign universities/institutions, which figure in the list of top 100 universities/institutions as per the THE (Times Higher Education World University) Ranking, published each year.
(ii) In addition, each Cadre Controlling Authority may also recommend not more than 5 specialized or professional courses in specified foreign universities/institutions that they feel would be of particular relevance and importance for officers of that service.
(iii) For each such specialized or professional course, officers of only that service may be eligible for funding whose cadre controlling authorities have recommended the course. Officers may be funded only for the specialized or professional courses that have been recommended by the respective cadre controlling authorities, and not for any other course in the university/institution, unless the university/institution is among the top 100 universities/ institutions as per the THE(Times Higher Education World University) Ranking .
(iv) In order to widen the scope of the Partial Funding scheme so as to cater to the diverse interests of the eligible officers, the Competent Authority has also approved relevant programmes in the listed category offered by the following universities as eligible for partial funding:
- Universities ranked in top 15 for Public Affairs Programme in USA as per US News & World Report's Rankings
- Universities ranked in top 10 for Health Policy & Management in USA as per US News & World Report's Rankings
- Universities ranked in top 10 for IT Management in USA as per US News & World Report's Rankings
- Universities ranked in top 10 for Public Finance & Budgeting in USA as per US News & World Report's Rankings
- Universities ranked in top 10 for Environmental Policy & Management in USA as per US News & World Report's Rankings
- Universities ranked in top 10 for Social Policy in USA as per US News & World Report's Rankings
- Universities ranked in top 10 for City Management & Urban Policy in USA as per US News & World Report's Rankings
- Universities ranked in top 10 for Public Management Administration in USA as per US News & World Report's Rankings
- Universities ranked in top 10 for Public Policy Analysis in USA as per US News & World Report's Rankings
(v) In order to encourage officers to avail programmes of their interests in different geographical locations for a wider exposure to the International best practices and cross cultural experiences the Competent Authority has also approved that the relevant programmes in the following universities shall also be considered eligible for partial funding:
- Top 10 British and European Universities as per US News & World Report's Rankings
- Top 10 Asian and Middle Eastern (other than Indian) Universities as per US News & World Report's Rankings.
- Top 5 Australian and New Zealand (at least one from NZ) Universities as per US News & World Report's Rankings.
- Top 5 Canadian Universities as per US News & World Report's Rankings.
(vi) For each year, the approved list of top 100 foreign universities/institutions as per the THE (Times Higher Education World University) Ranking and the specialized or professional courses in specified universities (not more than 5 for each service), along with the approximate number of officers who can be funded each year, will be circulated to all the cadre controlling authorities and also placed on the websites of the DoP&T and of the cadre controlling authorities, during the previous year.
IV. Admission may be sought and procured by the officers themselves.
V. The courses for which admission has been secured will be approved on a case-by-case basis by the Central Establishment Board (CEB), based on the recommendations of the concerned cadre controlling authorities on the ground of public interest and relevance to the Government, the concerned service and to the officer.
VI. Extent of financial support:
(i) In order to encourage officers to pursue study programmes in top universities as well as in two year programmes the competent authority has approved the grant of Two tier partial funding assistance as per the following rates with effect from 1st August 2010 :
|Programmes||1-year study||2-year study|
|Programmes in top 30 universities under THE(Times Higher Education World University) Ranking||US$ 35000||US$ 45000|
|(i) Programmes in top 31-100 universities under THE(Times Higher Education World University) Ranking,|
(ii) Additional 5 programmes recommended by the Cadre Controlling Authorities and
(iii) Identified sectoral and region based programmes not figuring in top 30 universities under THE(Times Higher Education World University) Ranking.
|US$ 25000||US$ 35000|
(ii) The financial support to each eligible officer would be limited to the cost of his/her tuition fee, living expenses and 'to and fro air fare' or the eligible financial assistance under the scheme whichever is lower.
(iii) The first charge on the funding would be towards 'tuition fee', the second charge on 'living expenses' and balance, if any, would be used towards meeting the 'to and fro air fare'.
(iv) The living expenses would be provided for a maximum period of 12 months @ US $1500 per month, thus limiting the 'living expenses entitlement' of the officer to US $18000.
(v) The ceiling of US $25,000 (US $35,000 or US $45000 as the case may be) would include funds provided under this scheme and any other scheme or grant of Government of India/State Government or any other agency, substantially funded by the Government of India or a State Government.
(vi) In case the officer receives financial support in any form, including tuition fee waivers, from any other institutions like the World Bank, the Ford Foundation, the University etc., the extent of GoI support will be limited to the total funds required for the study programme less funds provided by the World Bank, the Ford Foundation, the University etc., or US $25,000 (US $35,000 or US $45000 as the case may be) whichever is less.
(vii) The officers availing the partial funding assistance would be required to submit semester-wise undertaking to the effect that he/she has not received any other assistance from the university or any other organization, in addition to a similar undertaking/certificate to be submitted at the beginning of the programme stating that as and when he/she receives any official assistance, DOPT, Government of India would be informed of the same.
(viii) The financial support could be availed of by the officer at any point of the study programme and not necessarily in the first year, if the period of study programme exceeds one year.
VII. Other Conditions:
(i) The first year of the study programme, for which funding has been made available, shall be treated as 'on duty', and the rest of the period of the programme may be adjusted against study leave or any other type of leave, admissible and due to the officer concerned. However, the officer will not be entitled to any TA/DA during the period.
(ii) Officers receiving partial or full funding for the foreign study programme shall be required to execute a bond for undertaking to continue to serve the Government for a period of five years after completion of the course.
(iii) In the event of the officer failing to complete the foreign study programme and to obtain the diploma/degree/doctorate etc., for which financial assistance under the Scheme was provided, he/she shall refund to the government, the total amount of financial support provided to the officer under the scheme.
(iv) The officers shall fully comply with all the requirements that may be insisted upon by the Government as a monitoring mechanism to ensure that the officers successfully complete the study programme.
VIII. Documents to be submitted along with the applications for partial funding:
(i) The applications should invariably be accompanied by the following:-
- attested copies of ACR grading for last five years,
- certificate to the effect that no adverse entry stands in the ACRs,
- Vigilance clearance certificate.
(ii) A 'statement of purpose' from the officer indicating as to how the study programme would be useful to him/her in the present/future career in the government.
(iii) A copy of the letter of admission for the study programme from the university/institute.
(iv) A copy of the I-20/TAP-66 etc., if received by the officer.
(v) A statement of total estimated expenditure for completing the study programme indicating the break-up of the items such as tuition fees, living expenses etc. The statement should be supported with relevant extracts from the prospectus/communication from the university.
(vi) Details of other source (s) of funds, over and above the amount of partial funding applied for, like tuition waivers, scholarships, bank loans etc., which may have been secured/arranged by the officer to cover the shortfall, if any, are to be indicated.
IX. General guidelines for cadre controlling authorities and applicants:
(i) All the prospective participants, seeking financial assistance under the Scheme, should apply 'online' by filling the application placed in the Ministry's website (www.persmin.gov.in), and subsequently route the hard copy of the same to Training Division, DoP&T, through their respective cadre controlling authorities, duly recommended. It may, however, be noted that the applications will be placed before the Central Establishment Board (CEB) for consideration only after the candidature is duly recommended and forwarded by the respective cadre controlling authority.
(ii) The cadre controlling authorities shall recommend and forward to Training Division ,DoP&T only such applications which have satisfied all the eligibility conditions as per this circular.