When it comes to recruiting the brightest minds, nothing can stop public sector companies — neither a pending order from the Madras High Court nor an informal diktat from the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD). IITs and IIMs say, given the economic situation, students want PSUs for campus placements. PSUs, on their part, are not paying much heed to the public interest litigation in the Madras High Court. “Though the Madras High Court vacated a stay on direct recruitments by PSUs from campuses, a final order is still pending. Besides, we have also received a circular from MHRD regarding the same. We are going slow on inviting PSUs. But today, working in a PSU is as good as working in a private firm and that is attracting graduates.
Moreover, since the PSUs themselves are willing to visit our campus, we are allowing them to do so," said a placement committee member at one of the older IIMs. PSUs have been, since the Lehman Brothers crisis in 2008, been frequenting IITs and IIMs to recruit. The IITs and IIMs also, given the vagaries of the job market, are welcoming PSUs with open arms. “There was an informal notification from the MHRD after the petition not to encourage PSUs on campus for placements. But that has not stopped students from opting to work with them. In fact, many PSUs who not been invited are visiting campuses to recruit,” said a placement committee member at IIT-Guwahati, where PSUs like Oil India Ltd and ONGC, among others had come for recruitments. MHRD officials did not return the phone calls made. IIT-Bombay said given many of its students want PSU companies to be on campus for placements, it has allowed to companies to participate in the placement process. The institute has, however, informed the students about a pending PIL in the high court and put in a disclaimer on any consequences there of. A senior HR head of a PSU company, on the condition of anonymity, said, “We want to recruit engineers and management students and will continue to do so from IITs and IIMs irrespective of the PIL.” At IIT-Kharagpur, organisations like C-DAC, C-DOT, Garden Ridge Shipbuilders, Goa Shipyards, DRDO, Indian Navy, PowerGrid, and Coal India had visited campus for recruitments this year.