A scholarship programme called the GREAT Britain Scholarships was also announced. Under this, 291 scholarships worth around Rs 150 million (Rs 15 crore) will be on offer. Out of these, 59 will be undergraduate scholarships and 232 postgraduate scholarships in fields like engineering, law, business, art and design, biosciences and IT across 45 institutions in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Under the programme, students from the UK will spend two to four weeks in India and engage in various activities ranging from cultural immersion, placements, internships, teaching assistantships etc.
As many as 1,000 internships with Indian IT services company TCS are also on the anvil as part of this year’s programme which aims to help 25,000 people from the UK gain experience in India in the next five years.
Although around 1.6 lakh Indian students have studied in the UK since 2005, a Times Higher Education Report points out that the number of first- year enrolments fell by 10 percent in 2014-15.
Dominic Mcallister, British Deputy High Commissioner, Bengaluru, said that while visa regulations in the UK might seem cumbersome, it was “not actually the case”. “Students can convert their student visas to Tier 2 visas. However, they must make preparations for it before their course ends,” he said. A student can apply for a Tier 2 visa if he/she is offered a skilled job in the UK.