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Starting from next year onwards the prestigious IITs would be holding entrance exams in Singapore, UAE, Ethiopia and SAARC nations in order to attract foreign talent for its various undergraduate and post graduate programmes.
A meeting was held between the officials of the HRD and External Affairs ministries in which countries including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan, Singapore and UAE have been shortlisted for conducting the entrance exams for foreign nationals from next year onwards.
According to a senior member of HRD ministry,” The entrance test to the IITs abroad have been held till now only to admit Indian nationals. This is for the first time that it had been planned to admit foreign students through tests held abroad. It is aimed that the plan would be operationalised from the JEE/GATE exams to be conducted in 2017.”
The IITs with the help of the Indian missions in these countries would administer the common entrance exam to select the students. The officials also added that the seats made available to these foreign nationals would be supernumerary and in no way would lead to the reduction of the number of seats available to the Indian nationals at the 18 IITs.
Another important thing to note is that the fees to be paid by these foreign nationals would also be more and not the same as the subsidised fees applicable to the Indian Nationals. The MEA will give the research visa to these nationals for the entire duration of the programme rather than for one year at a time.
Although the test would be held in 2017 the outreach programme for this entire exercise would begin in the month of August itself in all the eight countries. The IIT Mumbai would be preparing the necessary information material for the outreach. This material would include the details of the tests, the courses and FAQs. The creation of a web portal is also in the pipeline for the purpose.
On behalf of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) would be the nodal agency for these tests.
The entire exercise of attracting the foreign students to the IITs is to boost their international academic rankings.