Published: 09th May 2019
Karnataka government revises Prabuddha scheme, leaving Dalit students in despair
Under the Siddaramiah government, more than 450 SC/ST students availed the scholarship to pursue their studies abroad
The Karnataka government's new revision of the Prabuddha scheme has shattered the dreams of Dalit students who wish to pursue studies abroad. The new guidelines made it mandatory that candidates who wish to pursue master's or PhD should get a minimum score of 285 out of 340 for GRE and 80 out of 120 for TOFEL, 400 out of 800 for GMAT for USA.
This has put Sharmila, a Dalit student in despair, She had recently received a mail from the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) offering her a seat in masters of engineering management. UTS deputy vice-chancellor Iain Watt has also mailed the general estimate of AUD 59,529 including living cost of AUD 20,290 for two years. But under the new revision, she is not eligible for a scholarship, which would have otherwise funded her studies.
Under the Siddaramiah government, more than 450 SC/ST students availed the scholarship to pursue their studies abroad. While for other countries, the candidate shall pass GRE with 295 out of 340 and IELTS - 06 out of 09 marks or TOEFL 80 out of 120 marks. Sharmila said many of her friends who are financially sound have joined the course passing IELTS exam. But, she could not make use of the scheme as the government has put the rider of clearing GRE.
She said she would lose a year in preparing and appearing for GRE exam. Sharmila's father said the department is insisting for GRE when the university does not require it. He said the government should relax GRE for candidates selected to universities other than that in the US.
He fears that such riders would only stop students from poor socio-economic backgrounds to avail the scholarships. "How many students from rural background and weaker sections would be able to clear GRE or TOEFL. Why should they insist for it when the varsity does not ask for it," he questioned.