To make higher education in Indian Universities/Institutes in different fields (except medical and related courses) in India accessible to the children of overseas Indians (PIOs) and Non- resident Indian students (NRIs) and promote India as a centre for higher studies Scholarship Programme for Diaspora Children (SPDC) was introduced in 2006-07.
Main features of the scheme :
- PIO/NRI students are awarded a scholarship of up to US$ 4000 per annum for payment of tuition fee, admission fee, and post-admission services for Under Graduate courses in Engineering, Technology, Humanities, Liberal Arts, Commerce, Management, Journalism, Hotel Management, Agriculture, Animal Husbandry and some other courses.
- A newly made SPDC was launched from the academic year 2016-17 with an extension from 40 to 66 countries (including 17 ECR countries); enhancing a number of scholarships from 100 to 150 with 50 earmarked for Children of Indian Workers in ECR counties. Of these 50 scholarships, 1/3rd are reserved for children of Indian workers in ECR countries studying in India. The entire process of applying, processing etc. is now through a portal (spdc.gov.in).
Scholarship is offered for pursuing courses in Central Universities of India offering Under Graduate Courses, including those pertaining to Information Technology, B.Sc (Nursing) and B.Pharma in Institutions accredited “A” Grade by NAAC; and Institutions covered under DASA Scheme, National Institutes of Technology (NITs), Schools of Planning and Architecture (SPAs), Indian Institutes of Information Technology (IIITs) etc. Applications are submitted and processed through a portal spdcindia.gov.in. Nearly 800 candidates were awarded scholarships since inception.
(a) SPDC is awarded to following four categories:
(i) Children of Person of Indian Origin/OCI
(ii) Children of Non-Resident Indian
(iii) Children of Indian Workers in ECR countries studying outside India
(iv) Children of Indian Workers in ECR countries studying in India
(b) “Persons of Indian Origin” (PIOs) shall mean the Persons who are citizens of other countries (except Pakistan and Bangladesh) who at any time held an Indian Passport, or who or either of his/her parent or any of his/her grandparent was a citizen of India by virtue of provisions of the Constitution of India or Section 2 (B) of Citizenship Act, 1955 (Act No. 57 of 1955).
Applicants are required to provide documentary evidence towards proof of Indian nationality or Indian origin. Persons of India Origin (PIOs) applicants are expected to submit proof of Indian origin, preferably a valid PIO card or OCI card issued by the Government of India. Those who cannot submit documentary evidence of Indian origin are required to submit a declaration about Indian origin.
In the absence of any documentary evidence about Indian origin, an affidavit from the applicant attested by the Head of Indian Mission concerned verifying the Indian Origin status of the applicant may be submitted.
(c) Non -Resident Indians as defined in Income Tax Act, 1961 with the following clarifications: An individual is Non-Resident when he/she is “not a resident” or who is “not ordinarily resident”.
A person is treated as “not ordinary resident” when any of the following conditions are satisfied.
(1) If he/she has not been resident in India in nine out of ten preceding years;
(2) If he/she has not been in India for a period of 730 days or more during the preceding 7 years.
(d.) Must have passed grade 11 and grade 12 from abroad. However, To apply under the quota under the category of Children of Indian Workers in ECR countries, who are left behind in India, the candidate must have passed the Senior Secondary (10+2) or equivalent examination from a system of education recognized by the Association of Indian Universities (AIU).
(e) Who has not passed the qualifying examination from a foreign country except in the case of children of ECR country workers (category 4.1.a.iv above), are not eligible for SPDC.
(f) Children of Indians residing in Nepal will be eligible for SPDC on the fulfilment of following two criteria: (i) Both parents should be registered in the Mission/Post in Nepal for a minimum period of four years. (ii) The applicant has done at least four years of schooling including two years of classes XI & XII in Nepal just prior to application.