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Dr. D. S. Kothari Postdoctoral Fellowship Scheme 2015-16

Deadline: Deadline: Always Open
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AwardFellowship for First, Second and third year is Rs. 46,500/- and a contingency grant of Rs. 1,00,000/- p.a.
EligibilityPhD holders with up-to 35 years of age
RegionAll India
Scholarship provider contact details

The National Coordinator,
Dr. D.S. Kothari Postdoctoral Fellowship Cell,
C/o Interdisciplinary School of Scientific Computing
Savitribai Phule Pune University
Ganeshkhind Post Office
Pune 411 007.

Phone No: (020) 25601406

Email ID:

What is Dr. D. S. Kothari Postdoctoral Fellowship Scheme 2015-16?

Dr. D. S. Kothari Postdoctoral Fellowship (DSKPDF) Scheme was introduced by the University Grants Commission (UGC) in year 2007 on the recommendation of the Empowered Committee (EC) chaired by Professor M. M. Sharma.
In addition to the existing RA/PDF positions provided by various funding agencies, a need was felt for PDF scheme running in a flexible mode, with fast track, on-line handling and decision making.
It was envisaged that the new PDF scheme must be tuned to the ground realities prevailing in our university system.
The DSKPDF Scheme was also expected to provide an opportunity to many fresh Ph. D..s to overcome the deficiencies in training at the doctoral level research and to explore new areas of research in better settings in the Indian University Sector.
    DSKPDF Scheme is open for full time research work, predominantly to young researchers preferably below 35 years of age who have received their Ph. D. degree or have submitted their Ph. D. thesis.
The Reservation Policy of Government of India with regard to SC/ST/OBC/PH is followed.
    Appropriate age relaxations for reserved category/women candidates are given as per UGC guidelines.
It is necessary that candidates identify Mentor for their postdoctoral Research work and obtain his/her consent for the guidance. After the selection, those holding the Ph. D. degree are directly awarded the PDF.
Those who have submitted their Ph. D. thesis are awarded a 'bridging fellowship' (with marginally reduced stipend) until they are formally awarded the Ph. D. degree. 
    DSKPDF is tenable only at the Science Departments of Indian Universities and UGC funded inter-University centers (such as IUCAA) which are eligible to receive Development grants from the UGC.

Who can apply for this scholarship ?

Aspirant below 35 years of age (Up to 3, 5 and 10 years of age relaxation for OBC, SC/ST/Women and physically handicapped respectively is admissible), who have either received a Ph.D. degree or submitted their Ph.D. thesis under science faculty are eligible to apply. It is necessary that candidate identifies a Mentor (affiliated to University/Institute wherein DSK Fellowship is tenable) for his/her postdoctoral Research work and obtain his/her consent for the mentorship. If selected, those holding the Ph.D. degree will be directly awarded the PDF.

Those who have submitted their Ph.D. thesis will be awarded a 'bridging fellowship' (with marginally reduced stipend) until they are formally awarded the Ph.D. degree. Higher PDF (with marginally elevated stipend) is admissible for those applicants, identified as outstanding by standing (core) peer committee of reviewers.
Teachers below age of 35, working on confirmed posts in Academic Institutes may also apply. However, along with the hard copy, they will be required to submit a certificate from their Head of the Institution (Registrar of University / Principal of a college) that the teacher will be given attest one year of sabbatical / special leave without financial support for carrying out their postdoctoral work.

The fellowship will be awarded on a yearly basis with renewal/termination clause on the basis of PDF mentor/peer group appraisal. However, the maximum duration of the PDF award would be 3 years. No extension is possible under any circumstances. Candidates should give an undertaking while availing the award, along with the endorsement of the research mentor that they would stay in place for a minimum of six months. Once the candidate is awarded the DSKPDF, and he/she joins the fellowship, he/she will not eligible to apply ever again for DSKPDF in the same or other workplace.

If applicant has already applied for Dr. D. S. Kothari Postdoctoral Fellowship and has been declared as unsuccessful, he/she is permitted to apply freshly with new research proposal only after one year from date of declaration of the earlier result.

How can you apply ?

You should apply for Login ID and Password before uploading the actual application. For getting the Login Id, you should fill the simple form, where you have to enter some basic information about yourself and about your Degree. It is necessary that the name given by you should match the one on your Master's and Ph.D. degree certificates for obtaining the Login ID and Password. After filling the basic form, you will receive an e-mail just for the email verification. Simply Click on the link given in your email, and your authenticated information will reach them
After verification of the information at their side, You will receive a mail containing a Login ID and Password at the E-mail address provided by you within 7 working days of your request.
You may upload your actual application form by using the above Login ID and Password. Please fill-in all the columns and attach the summary of your Ph.D. work, a summary of the proposed research work and a Mentor's CV in specified format limiting to 100 kb size individually. You may choose to attach a PDF or doc file for this purpose.


1. What are the eligibility criteria while applying for Dr. Kothari PDF Scheme of the UGC ?
Young researchers below 35 years of age (age relaxation applicable as per government of India rules), and who have been either awarded a Ph.D. degree or have submitted Ph.D. thesis in appropriate subjects, are eligible to apply. For more details, please visit: dskpdf site.

2. What are the criteria to be a Mentor for Dr. Kothari PDF applicant?
The faculty affiliated to an institution wherein DSK Fellowship is tenable and has successfully supervised at least three Ph.D. students can act as a Mentor for the applicant applying for DSKPDF. Number of students who have submitted the Ph.D. thesis, but have not been awarded the degree cannot be counted for this purpose.

3.Which workplaces are eligible to receive Dr. Kothari PDF Scheme of the UGC?
DSKPDF is tenable only at the Science Departments of Indian Universities and UGC-funded inter-University centers (such as IUCAA, IUAC, UGC-DAE-CSR etc.) which are eligible to receive Development grants from the UGC. Thus the fellowship is not tenable in I.I.T.’s or CSIR/DRDO/DAE laboratories etc. These are also not tenable in colleges (either Autonomous or affiliated). Before applying, make sure that the proposed workplace qualifies under the UGC rules. The prospective candidates and mentors may contact UGC for more details.

4. What is the joining procedure as DSK Postdoctoral Fellow at the proposed workplace?
After downloading the Award Letter from UGC website, the candidate has to submit a joining report (in prescribed format) forwarded through the Mentor, Head of the Department and Registrar of the University to the UGC. Soft copies of duly signed Award Letter and joining report must be uploaded electronically on the DSKPDF website using the link

5. What are the leave rules?
Leave for a maximum period of 30 days in a year in addition to public holidays may be availed of by the Postdoctoral Fellow with the approval of the mentor and Head of the Department. Women candidates are eligible for maternity leave with full pay upto 180 days as per the Government of India rules, once during the tenure of their award. The Fellow, in exceptional cases may be allowed by the UGC, leave without fellowship and contingency, for a period not exceeding six months during the tenure of award on the recommendation of the mentor and Head of Department of the institution concerned. The period of leave without fellowship will be counted as a part of the tenure. To avail this leave, the Fellow has to be submit a request to the the DSKPDF Cell. Decision on the request will be taken by the UGC- Empowered Committee.

6. What is the procedure to send annual report after successful completion of each year?
The candidate should send a hard copy of the report as per the given format to 

* Joint Secretary, University Grants Commission, 
(Attn. BSR Section)
Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg, New Delhi-110 002
* National Co-ordinator, Dr. D. S. Kothari Postdoctoral Cell, C/o Interdisciplinary School of Scientific Computing, University of Pune, Pune-411007. 

Soft copies need to be uploaded on the DSKPDF website without fail using the link: 

7. What is the resignation procedure?
The Fellow has to inform in writing his/her intention to resign to UGC, New Delhi and DSKPDF Cell Pune. Fellow has to lodge a request with all details to DSKPDF Cell Pune and wait for reply. If request is accepted, the candidate has to submit his/her final report (format given on our website) with utilization certificate to UGC. Soft copies need to be uploaded using the link:

8. What is the procedure regarding transfer of fellowship to another workplace and/or Mentor?
In general, a change in mentor/workplace is discouraged. However, DSK Postdoctoral Fellows who have completed at least 6 months of tenure at accepted work place, is eligible to apply for a change of the workplace/Mentor. In such a case, the Fellow has to lodge a formal request with DSKPDF Cell, Pune. The application must furnish the following set of documents:

* No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the current Mentor. 
* Consent letter from the proposed Mentor showing willingness to work on the previously sanctioned proposal. 
* Brief CV of the newly proposed Mentor as per format complied by DSKPDF Scheme.
* Summary of the work done during DSKPDF tenure with the previous Mentor. 

The UGC Empowered Committee will be the final authority for making the decision.

9. What is the maximum period for joining after receiving the award letter?
The Fellows can join within 60 days from the date mentioned on the Award Letter received from UGC. However, in exceptional situation, Fellows can the join within six months. For this, the candidate has to lodge a request with DSKPDF cell and wait for the final decision from the UGC.

10. Can I apply for DSKPDF under my Ph.D. Supervisor?
The candidate is, in general, strongly discouraged to work under the Ph.D. thesis Supervisor for PDF. If you still wish to do so, you may provide your justification at the end of your proposal.

11. Can I reapply for Dr. Kothari PDF Scheme of the UGC?
The Fellows, who have not joined the workplace after receiving the Award Letter of the DSK Postdoctoral Fellowship, are eligible to re-apply.

12. How can I use my contingency grants?
You have to follow the rules of your workplace. Regarding financial matters, you may contact the UGC, New Delhi.

13. Can I purchase equipment from my contingency grant?
Yes, he/she can purchase minor equipment useful for research such as minor laboratory equipment or laptop costing less than 50,000/- from your contingency budget.

14. How will the Bridging Fellowship get converted into normal Fellowship ?
The Fellow has to lodge a request enclosing duly filled and signed Certificate V along with Ph.D. degree certificate to DSKPDF Cell, Pune. Decision regarding the request will be taken by the Empowered Committee.

15. Can the researchers who are foreign nationals apply for DSKPDF ?
Yes, these PDFs also have an international flavor and are open to students from other parts of the world, particularly to those from developing and neighboring countries. Age relaxation up to 10 years is available for foreign nationals.

16. What do I do if, by an oversight, I have entered wrong/incomplete information in the Application Form?
Due to security reasons, update on submitted application form is not possible at any point of time. So please fill the form carefully.

17. What are the deadlines to apply for DSKPDF scheme?
There are no deadlines. The application will be received throughout the year.

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