Everyone has heard about Brain Drain which is a loss to the nation of highly skilled professionals through emigration of developed countries.
Sometime back, we also take notice of Brain Gain when the country’s position was judged better at the global level and over 1,000 Indian scientists working abroad had returned to India in the last two-three years. They felt that India is changing and they can fulfill their ambitions here also as they are finding better opportunities in India too. From brain drain, a scenario of brain gain was seen.
Another concept was seen of Brain Circulation – which was a movement of skilled talent in a way that the migration is beneficial for both the countries, that is for the destination country and for the origin country as well.
India has witnessed a large scale of brain drain from 1970’s to 1980’s. Starting from 1990’s, India witnessed return of high skilled emigrants to India and their contribution to India’s development. As of 2017, over 30 million Indians are living abroad.
In fact, Non-resident Indians – NRIs help to transfer advanced technology, knowledge and the best practices of education from the country they are staying. At the same time, a part of Indi’s success can be attributed to the Indian Diaspora which contributed in terms of knowledge and financial investment to India.
We cannot deny of the fact that the development of Information Technology - IT sector in India has the contribution of Indians returned from abroad as well.
It is said that approximately 80,000 NRIs returned to India in the past two years. Some of them established their own firms and created lots of jobs. Still 3,05,43,419 crore Indians are settled on foreign lands – mainly in Saudi Arab, UAE, USA, Kuwait, Oman, Nepal, Singapore, UK, Australia, Canada, UK - out of which 1,03,08,012 crore are Non-resident Indians and 1,78,35,407 are PIO - Persons of Indian Origin.
India is one of the top countries that get large amounts of remittances from its citizens living in foreign countries.
No doubt, in India, opportunities for highly educated professionals are now improved tremendously and many graduates and post-graduates are now prefer to work in India.
But still, during the current academic session, it has been seen that the admissions at all the institutions – Industrial Training Institutes, Polytechnic Colleges, Degree Colleges and Engineering Colleges – is too less than the in-take capacity.
Now the question s as to where the pass-outs from schools have gone? A close look to the IELTS institutes running with over capacity in number of batches to crack the test in high bands, clearly indicate that the youths of India are interested to go abroad for earning simultaneously with the study where job opportunities are also available side-by-side.
On the other hand, India being one of the fastest developing countries in the world is doing its best as a pull factor to Non-Resident Indians. India is celebrating ‘Pravas Bharatiya Diwas’ from 2002 and is connecting to Indian Diaspora all over the world. By this way Indian Government is encouraging NRIs to contribute to the India’s Development.
Besides this, Indian government eased regulations for FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) to NRIs. India provided OCI (Overseas Citizens of India) cards to Persons of Indian Origin and made their legal formalities easier to return and to invest in India.
Indian government is also planning to allocate short-term research projects to Indian scientists and Technocrats living in abroad to utilize their knowledge. These projects are about solving local problems. To connect to young overseas citizens of India, Indian government launched ‘Know India’ program.
Situation in other countries : Many countries like ‘South Korea’ and ‘Taiwan’ are reaping the benefits of Brain Gain.
Underdeveloped countries are at disadvantage, because most of their emigrants are unwilling to return to their home countries.
India is indeed able to turn ‘Brain Drain’ into ‘Brain Gain’. But we have a long way to go. We cannot expect NRIs to sacrifice their better lives for the sake of developing their home country. There are people who do that for sure. But not all will do that and we have look into the push factors first..
India should be able to attract the best talent all over the world by eliminating defects such as corruption, nepotism, red-tapism etc. Till then, India may not be able to transform brain drain to brain gain to full extent.
Frankly speaking, no doubt, there is difficulty in obtaining long-term work visas and slow economic growth of developed countries are also helping India in terms of brain gain but how low this will go on.
Talking about the negative side, still there is large pay gap. India is offering less salary to highly skilled professionals when compared to developed countries. Still emigration of trained professionals is high in India.
Push factors like corruption, reservations, lack of infrastructure, lack of investment and lots of legal hurdles are still highly prevalent in India making it difficult to reap the benefits of brain gain to full extent.
Favorable policies in developed countries are attracting talented Indians. India is not giving enough competition to attract them.
Still I hold good that that India is producing the Engineers without making arrangements for their consumption in the market whereas the need of the hour is of skilled-workers. Such force can be prepared only by giving the training in short-term vocational courses so that they are consumed in the industrial and manufacturing units.
At the same time, youths are frustrated with the existing set-up and the factors responsible are - lack of guidance and poor opportunity of jobs at home are told to be responsible, inclination of youth towards IELTS and go abroad is going towards alarming side and failure of the government to provide job opportunities and appropriate training to youth.
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