New Delhi: Giving solace to students whose job offers got cancelled because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Union HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ on Wednesday said that the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) will hold special placement drives for such students. Also Read - Teachers, Researchers Permitted to Work From Home Till March 31: MHRD

“I have also asked all IIT directors to hold special placement drives for the students affected by cancelled job offers. The students to whom the jobs were offered during the placement drive are among the country’s brightest minds and can help recruiters in times of crisis,” he said. Also Read - JNU Attack: Varsity VC Meets MHRD Officials, Briefs Them About Situation in Campus

The development comes as educational institutes and companies are closed because of the 21-day nationwide lockdown. Also Read - Exams at Jamia, AMU Rescheduled; Situation Getting Normal: MHRD

Prior to this, the HRD minister had urged the recruiters not to withdraw their job offers made to students in campus placements due to the economic slowdown created by the coronavirus pandemic.

“I have also appealed to all campus recruiters not to withdraw jobs offered to graduating students of technical education institutions,” he added.

The appeal from the HRD minister came after a few job offers at the IITs and Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) got revoked due to uncertainty among companies in view of the coronavirus pandemic.

In the meantime, the HRD minister had also asked the 23 IITs across the country to ensure that the campus placements are not affected due to the situation.

In the wake of the economic slowdown, the All IITs’ Placement Committee (AIPC) also approached all the companies that had visited for campus recruitment, requesting them not to rescind placement offers made for the academic year 2019-20.