The Union Health Ministry has asked AIIMS-Delhi to limit the duration of Ph.D. scholars and scientists engaged in research projects to a maximum of 6 years. As of now, the AIIMS administration has not implemented this directive.
For the past few days, Ph.D. scholars and scientists involved in research projects at AIIMS have been protesting against this decision. The faculty members of the esteemed medical institute have also expressed their disagreement with the decision.
According to the directive issued on July 12 by the Health Ministry, project staff will not be allowed to continue or be hired for more than 6 years of cumulative engagement at the institute. However, hiring or shifting of current staff to fresh or ongoing projects may be permitted, as long as they adhere to the aforementioned 6-year limit and other applicable conditions.
In response to the protests by scientists, the AIIMS administration had initially suspended its earlier order on July 10, which had put the recruitment and selection process of research staff on hold pending a review of the guidelines.
Despite this, the Health Ministry issued a new directive on July 12, restating the requirement for AIIMS to limit the employment duration on projects to six years.
The Society of Young Scientists (SYS), representing scientists and Ph.D. scholars at AIIMS, has raised concerns that capping the project duration will result in the immediate termination of approximately 1,400 employees, including researchers and technical staff involved in various projects at AIIMS. Both the Faculty Association of AIIMS and the AIIMS Nurses Union have offered their support to SYS regarding this matter.