India's Brain Gain – Are IITians Turning Down Foreign Offers?
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India's Brain Gain – Are IITians Turning Down Foreign Offers?

India's Brain Gain


The Prime Minister of the country recently talked about India’s Brain Gain. He stated that brain drain is actually a loss to the nation as talents from India went abroad to get jobs to lead a better life. But, the aim of the government is not a brain drain, but a brain gain as it can help with the country’s development in a number of ways.

Brain Gain to the Country:

In the late 1980s and during the early 1990s, the trend was that graduates from top institutions like IITs in India were heading westward for their career. Not just during this period, but every year a few hundreds of fresh graduates from these institutions take the same path. But, according to the latest news brain gain is happening in the country as many IITians are turning down foreign job offers, while the number of foreign countries hiring Indian students is also decreasing.

What Happened Last Year?

The great thing to notice about India’s brain gain is that last year not more than 200 IITians out of 10,000 students took job positions in foreign countries. According to the record of the year 2016, 84 students from IIT, Bombay moved on with the international job offers, but last year IIT-B is the highest in the number of students, who accepted job offers from foreign countries and the number was just 50. This is followed by 40 students from IIT, Delhi, 25, 19, 17 and 13 respectively from Kharagpur, Kanpur, Roorkee and Madras IITs accepting job offers in foreign nations last year.

From the words of the Director of IITD:

From the words of the director of IIT-Delhi Mr. Ramgopal Rao, he has stated that as compared to what it was two decades ago, just a small percentage of students are opting to work abroad. He further added that two decades ago, nearly 80% of IITians preferred foreign job over jobs within the country. Even though there was not much dramatic difference in the previous year, the count was actually larger. It was further added that with the first phase of placements already completed, the upcoming edition is likely to have just a few international companies getting to IIT campuses for recruitment purpose.

AII-IIT placement Committee Convener’s words:

Ms. Kaustubha Mohanty, the AII-IIT placement committee convener said that when the foreign companies were asked about the reason for bringing in lesser offers, it was stated that the profiles of IITians have changed considerably and also their requirement was lower as well.

This does not mean that companies are not ready to hire IITians, but the fact is also that many IITians are interested towards India’s brain gain as they do not want to take up jobs in foreign countries as mentioned earlier. In fact, there is a reduction in the number of IITians applying for international job positions as well.

Chair Professor of IIT-Bombay:

As per the words of Mr. Deepak Phatak, the chair professor of IIT-B, he was actually concerned about the quality of graduates when there was a reduction in the number of foreign hirers in IITs some years ago. To find the answer to this concern, he just organized exit interviews with students and found that students are of the opinion that India these days is turning out to be the land of opportunities. Moreover, many foreign countries have their offices in India and so they can very well work here itself for a foreign country, rather than hitting a foreign land.

Trend in the Early 1990s:

During this period, there was a considerable amount of computer science graduates from IITs, who went to the US. Due to this increase in the number, World Bank actually suggested that an exit tax can be levied on IITians and other professionals leaving the nation. It was actually suggested because this move will really bring good revenue to the country of more than $1 billion per annum. In fact, as per the placement records this year, the number of students headed to the US were beaten up by the number of IITians, who have moved to Japan for jobs.

India is Gaining:

The term brain drain was coined earlier as many state-subsidized talents moved on to western countries and are spending their talents towards the development of those nations. But, now, this trend is changing and it is actually a brain gain to India. Rather than calling it as a brain drain or brain gain, it can now be called as brain circulation, as many IITians these days are on and off in India and in foreign countries. Just a small percentage of less than 15% of graduates are heading to foreign countries these days.

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