Centre to rope in MBA interns in fight against COVID-19

Coronavirus: MBA interns to assist empowered groups on COVID-19 data analysis and policy inputs

Representative image. (Credit: iStock Photo)

The government will be roping in MBA interns from institutions like IIMs, TERI and Indian Institute of Public Administration (IIPA) to assist the 11 high-level Empowered Groups set up to tackle COVID-19 in data analysis and providing policy inputs.

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The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) has already written to 26 premier institutes, including 20 IIMs, across the country asking them to propose the names of interns who could be considered for the internship.

The Training Division of the DoPT has been in discussion with the IIMs and other institutions, including Indian School of Business, Management Development Institute and APJ Abdul Kalam Foundation among others, to take its long-standing collaborations and partnerships with them to leverage to support the efforts of the government to fight COVID-19.

A senior official said one of the decisions of these discussions was to provide MBA interns for "data analysis and evidence-based policy inputs".

The interns will be selected from the panel given by these institutions after an interview conducted remotely. They will be attached to the Empowered Groups for eight weeks from the date of joining.

"The Empowered Groups will assign tasks and get outputs as required by the group from the interns assigned, who will be working remotely on the work assigned to them. The entire collaboration will be managed through different channels created for each interested Empowered Group using Slack as the app," the DoPT letter said. No stipend will be paid to the interns during the assignments, it said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on March 29 appointed these 11 Empowered Groups of senior bureaucrats for quick planning and implementation of strategies to deal with the pandemic. Set up under the Disaster Management Act, each of the 11 groups will include a senior representative from the Prime Minister’s Office and Cabinet Secretariat.

Each group has been assigned a specific area to look after. While one of the group will handle medical emergency management, another will look after the availability of hospitals. Separate groups will look after issues related to setting up of isolation and quarantine facilities, ensure supply of masks, Personal Protection Equipment, gloves and ventilators as well as augmenting human resources and capacity building. 

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