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Central Sector Scholarship – A Scholarship Scheme for College and University Students

Central Sector Scholarship Scheme for College and University Students is a centrally-funded merit-cum-means scholarship initiated by the Department of Higher Education of MHRD. Started with the objective to financially assist students of economically underprivileged families, Central Sector Scholarship scheme is disbursed among a total of 82,000 graduate/postgraduate students every year. This scholarship is given in equal proportion to boys and girls, i.e., 41,000 of the total number of scholarships are reserved for boys and the other 41,000 are for girl candidates. The selected students receive an annual scholarship amount of up to INR 20,000 so that they could meet their day-to-day expenses while pursuing higher studies.

Latest Update: The applications for Central Sector Scholarship have started on 16th August 2020. The last date to submit applications on the National Scholarship Portal is 31st October 2020.

A detailed description of the Central Sector Scholarship scheme can be found below. Complete details regarding scholarship objective, key dates, eligibility conditions, awards and application process are highlighted in this article. Find a brief account of these details in the table given below.

Highlights of Central Sector scholarship

S.No. Particulars Details
1. Awards Up to INR 20,000 per annum till the completion of course
2. Eligibility Candidates who are above the 80th percentile of successful students who have passed class 12

Pursuing regular UG/PG course

Annual family income less than INR 8 Lakh

3. Application period* July-October*
4. Application process Application through official NSP

* The application period mentioned above is tentative and may change as per the discretion of the scholarship provider.

Now, read about the Central Sector Scholarship scheme in complete detail as mentioned below.

Central Sector Scholarship – Objective

Offered to meritorious students, the Central Sector Scholarship Scheme for College and University Students aims to provide monetary support to those students who come from low-income group families. The fund provided under this scholarship helps the candidate to meet his/her daily expenses incurred while pursuing graduate or postgraduate studies in general or professional courses.

Central Sector Scholarship – Awards

Central Sector Scholarship awards a total of 82,000 scholarships every year, among which 50% of the scholarship is earmarked for girl candidates and the remaining 50% is for boy candidates. All these scholarships are distributed to the State Education Boards on the basis of the population of 18-25 years age group in the respective State, after segregating the share of CBSE and ICSE. Furthermore, the scholarships allotted to State Education Boards are divided in the ratio of 3:2:1 among the pass-outs of Science, Commerce and Arts, respectively. The selected students receive the scholarship amount directly into their account through Direct Benefits Transfer (DBT) mode. Given below is the detail of rewards given under Central Sector Scholarship scheme.

Award Money of Central Sector Scholarship Scheme

S.No. Level of Study Scholarship Amount
1. Graduation An annual scholarship amount of INR 10,000 for 1st three years of graduation.

In case of 5-year integrated course (professional studies), INR 20,000 per year is given to students during 4th and 5th year of study.

If the students are pursuing technical courses such as B.Tech., B.Engg., the scholarship is given up to graduation level.

2. Post-graduation An amount of INR 20,000 is provided to students studying at postgraduation level.

Central Sector Scholarship – Key Dates

This merit-cum-means scholarship is generally announced every year in the month of July and its deadline falls in the last week of October. The application period varies from year-to-year and is subject to change as per the discretion of the scholarship provider. For academic session 2020-21, the last date to apply for the scholarship is 31 October 2020.

Central Sector Scholarship – Eligibility Criteria

Central Sector Scholarship scheme is meant for those bright students who belong to economically disadvantaged families. While applying for this merit-cum-means scholarship, the applicants must make sure that they are above the 80th percentile of successful students in the relevant stream in class 12 board exam. Find below more details about the eligibility criteria needed to apply for the scholarship.

  • The applicants must be in the top 20th percentile merit list of class 12 result of concerned boards (SEB/CBSE/ICSE).
  • The candidates must be pursuing regular courses of graduation/postgraduation/professional studies from colleges/universities recognised by AICTE, UGC, MCI, DCI or other regulatory bodies.
  • The candidates belonging to reserved categories of SC, ST, OBC and PWD will get a reservation of 15%, 7.5%, 27% and 5%, respectively.
  • The candidates’ annual family income must not exceed INR 8 Lakh.
  • The applicants must not be availing any other scholarship benefits.
  • Also, those students who are pursuing Diploma courses are not eligible for this merit-cum-means scholarship.

If you wish to know about more Centrally-funded scholarships, then read ‘UGC Scholarship – All You Need to Know’.

Central Sector Scholarship – Application Process

To make the application process easy and accessible for applicants, MHRD allows students to fill the scholarship application form online through the government scholarship portal, the National Scholarship Portal (NSP). Follow the steps given below to fill the Central Sector Scholarship application form.

  • Applicants applying on NSP for the first time need to register with NSP as a new user.
  • Fill in all the required information and click on ‘Register’ to get registered. A student application ID and password is generated on the registered mobile number.
  • The applicants need to log in to NSP using the newly generated ID and password. An OTP is sent on the registered mobile number using which the candidate must change his/her password.
  • Once the password is changed, the candidates are directed to Applicant’s Dashboard Page, where applicants need to click on ‘Application form’ to start the application process.
  • The applicants need to provide all the necessary details such as registration details, academic details, basic details, contact details and scheme details.
  • All the required documents in support of identity and academic eligibility must be uploaded by the applicants.
  • Now, the filled-in application form must be saved as a draft so that the applicant can check every detail once again to make sure they are correct.
  • Finally, the candidate must click on ‘Submit’ button to submit the completed scholarship application form.

Note: These online scholarships submitted by the candidates are verified at two levels – one at institute level where the candidate is studying and the other at education board level through which the candidate passed his/her class 12 exam.

Central Sector Scholarship – Key Documents

There are a few necessary documents that the applicants must keep with them ready at the time of application process. The list of the required documents for the Central Sector Scholarship Scheme for College and University Students is given below.

  • Bank passbook issued in the name of the applicant for filling bank details
  • Aadhaar card number (In case Aadhaar is not yet assigned, alternatives like Aadhaar enrolment ID slip, voter ID card, driving license, PAN, passport etc. can be used
  • Income certificate issued by the competent authority
  • Caste certificate, if applicable
  • Disability certificate, if applicable
  • Class 12 mark sheet

Central Sector Scholarship – Renewal Policy

The beneficiaries of this merit-cum-means scholarship are eligible to receive the scholarship for a maximum period of 5 years which includes both graduation and postgraduation period. The candidates must be pursuing graduation and post-graduation in the same stream. Moreover, the candidates must fulfil the prescribed eligibility criteria in order to get the scholarship renewed.

  • The students must have secured at least 50% or more marks in the previous exam.
  • The students must maintain the attendance of at least 75%.
  • The candidates must not be involved in any ragging activities.
  • The candidates can apply on NSP for renewal of this merit-cum-means scholarship.

Central Sector Scholarship – FAQs

✔️ Q. How can a student get a Central Sector Scholarship?

The Central Sector Scholarship, run by MHRD, Government of India is meant to support the studies of meritorious students coming from underprivileged families. The students who fulfil all the eligibility conditions may apply for the scholarship through the National Scholarship Portal (NSP). Once the application gets verified, the selected students get the scholarship amount directly in their respective bank accounts through DBT.

✔️ Q. Who is eligible for the Central Sector Scholarship?

The students, who are among the top 20th percentile of successful students in the relevant stream in Class 12 board examination can avail benefits under this scholarship. They must be pursuing a regular undergraduate/ postgraduate/ professional course from a recognised institution in India. Also, the annual income of the family should be less than INR 8 lakh per annum from all sources.

✔️ Q. What are the documents required for the Central Sector Scholarship?

The students applying for the Central Sector Scholarship need to provide certain documents in support of their application such as bank passbook in the name of the applicant, Aadhaar card number, income certificate, caste certificate (if applicable), disability certificate (if applicable), and Class 12 mark sheet.

✔️ Q. What is the minimum income requirement for Central Sector Scholarship?

There is no minimum income requirement for the scholarship. However, the annual income of the applicant's family must not exceed INR 8 lakh per annum from all sources.

✔️ Q. What is the minimum percentage requirement for renewal of Central Sector Scheme?

To ensure the renewal of scholarship, the students must secure at least 50% marks or more in the previous examination. Also, they must maintain the attendance of at least 75%.

✔️ Q. Is this scholarship available for General category students?

Yes, the Central Sector Scholarship is meant for all categories of students (including General category). However, reservations are available for various reserved categories as per the norms laid by the Government of India. 15% scholarships are reserved for Scheduled Caste (SC) students, 7.5% scholarships are reserved for Scheduled Tribe (ST) candidates, 27% scholarships are reserved for Other Backward Classes (OBC) candidates, and 5% scholarships are reserved for Physically Handicapped/Persons with Disabilities (PwDs).

Central Sector Scholarship – Contact Details

In case of any query regarding the Central Sector Scholarship scheme, the applicants can contact:

Address: National Scholarship Division,

Ministry of Human Resource Development, Department of Higher Education,

West Block 1, 2nd Floor, Wing 6, Room No. 6,

R.K. Puram, Sector 1, New Delhi 110066.

Telephone No: 011-26172917, 26172491, 26165238

Also, read ‘Means Scholarship – All You Need to Know’ to enrich your knowledge of scholarships offered for economically weak students.

Anamika Sharma

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