Coming out as a major relief to the students belonging to OBC category, Union Human Resource Development Minister Prakash Javadekar said that the reservation of students belonging to OBC category in National Talent Search Examination (NTSE)-stage II has been approved. Following the approval, the thousands of students can now avail the benefits of NTSE scholarship. The approval by the HRD Ministry came on November 1. Commenting on the extension of reservation, HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar said that the government has increased the scholarship rates. He further stated that government is also planning to double the number of scholarships from 1000 to 2000 annually.

According to reports, around 10 lakh, Class 10 students appear for the exam annually. It is also being said that the amount of scholarship is also expected to be increased to Rs 5,000 every month in next couple of years. As per the current reservation scheme under NTSE, a scholarship of 15% is reserved for students falling under SC category; around 7.5% share of scholarships is enjoyed by ST category and 3% for the students with disabilities. In 2019, the HRD department is also planning to extend 27% reservation to OBC students. Prakash Javadekar said that ‘since the process for the 2018 exam is already underway, it has been decided to extend the reservation from 2019’.

NCERT, since 1963 has been rewarding over 1000 such scholarships annually. The scheme NTSE was previously named as National Science Talent Search Scheme (NSTSS) and was meant for science students only. However, this later got changed and the scheme was renamed as National Talent Search Examination (NTSE). NTSE now serves benefits to the students of science, social sciences, humanities, languages, commerce, vocational studies, fine arts and professional courses such as engineering, medicine, technology, management and law – covering almost everything.

Here is everything you need to know about NTSE from eligibility criteria to exam dates.

For Stage I — Eligibility criteria, fees and other important guidelines are announced by the respective state or union territory. The exams for the same are held in November. The students, who get shortlisted under Stage I, do not have to pay any fee. However, for Stage II, the exams are usually conducted in May. The scholarships awarded by the selected students are as follows:

Students of 11 & 12 get a scholarship of Rs 1,250 per month, the undergraduates and post-graduates get a scholarship of Rs 2,000 per month. And, the scholarship for Ph D is fixed as per UGC norms. The stage – I of the NTSE examination will be held on November 4 and 5, 2017, all across the country.