Staff crunch hits premier institutes
The key to saddle India's demographic dividend is education. Currently India is the third largest in the world in terms of higher education and, is likely to surpass the US in the next five years and China in the next 15 years to be the largest system of higher education in the world. But actually the conditions are not as good as seen. Shortage of faculty is the biggest and most important issue in India's higher education system. Faculty shortage is a big problem for any university in India these days and moreover we are not getting quality candidates for the post.
There are around 33,000 plus colleges in India with around 17 million plus students. Out of these, around 86% of students are in UG while 12% in PG.
But currently there are faculty shortage in every national level institute across India. According to studies, there are 37% in IIT's, 22% in IIM's, and 25% in NIT's. Only 6 out of 16 IIT's met the instruction of a student to teacher ratio of 10:1. For instance, at IIT Delhi where there should be at least 700 faculty member as there are around 7000 students, currently there are only around 450 faculty members.
Medical colleges of national and state level are also reeling under a faculty shortage. According to figures from the Department of Medical Education, out of 2,872 posts allocated by the Medical Council of India (MCI) in government medical colleges, 798 or nearly 28% are vacant. According to government data there are total shortage of 305 posts for senior faculty and assistant professor in AIIMS.
H Maheshappa, vice-chancellor, Visvesvaraya Technical University, said, "Today, a professor gets a monthly salary of around Rs 1 lakh, an associate professor's salary is over Rs 70,000 and an assistant professor gets around Rs 40,000. Barring the elite engineering colleges, others are not getting teachers and managements are unable to hire and pay."
Pankaj Jain, a research scholar at IISc, said a career in research seems dull. "I'm worried about what I'm going to do. If I were to join an academic institute after my getting my PhD, there needs to be more scope for good research. Only then can I think of teaching as a career option."
The main reason for faculty shortage is lack of money, inadequate environment for research, low salary.