Division of Human Resource Planning and Development (HRD)

 Guidelines for operationalization and conduct of
Extramural Projects for Grantees of ICMR’s Extramural
Research Projects

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Application Form

Formal Acceptance Form
Format for Annual Progress Report
Format for Final Report


The Indian Council of Medical Research provides financial assistance to promote health research. The assistance is provided by way of grants to scientists/professionals who have a regular employment in the universities, medical colleges, postgraduate institutions, recognized research and development laboratories and NGOs (documentary evidence of the recognition should be enclosed with the application).


1.      Proposals in fundamental/strategic research as well as development and evaluation research in the form of Adhoc / task force projects including operational research are considered for ICMR support.


2.      Research grants from ICMR are intended to supplement research facilities available at the host institutions.


3.      Staff:   For staff to be recruited in the projects, all the guidelines issued by ICMR (Admn.II) from time to time will be followed (e.g. Order No. 16/107/2008- Admn. II dated 24.08.2016, 4.10.2016 and 7.11.2016). All the subsequent orders will be automatically applicable.


4.      Sanction of Projects

Once a project is approved for funding, the concerned Technical Division would inform the Principal Investigator (PI) that the project has been technically approved for funding and communicate the budget including the details of the staff, equipment, contingencies, travel grants etc.

4. a.  Budget

The budget would be sanctioned under broad sub-heads as under:

i.                    Staff                                                         -Pay and allowance of the staff

ii.                 Contingency                                            -Recurring


iii.               Travel (if approved)

iv.               Equipment (if approved)

v.                  Overhead charges

4. b. Number of projects with the PI

Under normal conditions a PI should only be implementing three ICMR funded research projects at a given point in time. While submitting an application for a research project the PI should give in detail all the research projects (completed, on-going). Fresh research proposal can be considered only when the on-going research proposals are about to conclude.


5.      After sanction of project

The PI is expected to inform the concerned Technical Division about the following:

a.      Formal acceptance of the budget sanctioned.

b.      For all equipment approved in the project, the PI is required to give a certificate to the effect that either the equipment is not available or not accessible for the project work in his/her institute.

c.      The name of the statutory auditor.

d.      An undertaking that the staff employed for the project would be the responsibility of the host institution and would have no claim to a permanent employment with the ICMR.  The project staff would be governed by administrative and service rules of host Institutes.


         On receipt of the above information from the PI, the Division will process the release of grant.


6.      Release of grants

The funds are released in 6/12 monthly installments. The first installment is released along with the sanction letter. It would include the entire grant for purchase of equipment and recurring grant for the period of six months. Next installment would be for the next 6/12 months or at the end of the project. Steps to procure the approved equipment should be initiated immediately (to avoid escalation of cost) following the prescribed norms of the host institution.


7.      Re-appropriation of funds

Expenditure should on no account exceed the budget sanctioned for the project. Expenditure incurred over and above the sanctioned amounts against one or more sub-heads of expenditure such as pay & allowances, contingencies etc. shall be met without references to ICMR. For re-appropriation of under savings and equipment, a request will have to be sent to ICMR and Heads of Division can make the appropriate decisions. The PI should take any action only after receiving approval from ICMR in such cases.


8.      Down gradation/Up-gradation of approved posts

For whatever reasons, if an investigator would like to downgrade or upgrade a post or convert it to an equivalent post with another designation, the PI will have to send a request to ICMR with adequate justification. The justification will be carefully examined by the Technical Division and if approved, Heads of Divisions will communicate the same to the PI. However, the PIs will have to manage such re-designations within the budget and only after appropriate approvals.


9.      Date of start

The sanction letter would specify the date of start. It can only be a prospective date. If, however, no date is mentioned in the sanction letter, the project will be considered as initiated and operative from the day the grant is received by the investigator. This date would have to be communicated by the host Institute to ICMR. It will in no case be later than one month after the receipt of the draft by the Institute. The date of start of a project can be changed following a request from the PI provided no expenditure has been incurred from the grant released by the Council to the date of request.


10. Utilization of the travel grant

The grant can be utilized for travel of the PI, co-investigator or of research fellow/associates working on the scheme for:

a.      Attending seminars/symposia/conferences within the county provided the PI himself or the Fellow/Associate, is presenting, a research paper based on the project work (either oral or poster presentation).

b.      Taking up field work/travel connected with the research work with sanction of TA/DA as per entitlement

c.      Visiting the ICMR Hqrs office for meetings related to the project

d.      Attending a training course relevant to the project (mainly for project staff).

e.      Travel grant cannot be used for foreign travel or related expenses for any reason.


11. Utilizing the contingent grant

This guideline is meant for recurring as well as non-recurring expenditure under the contingency grant. The contingent grant can be utilized for purposes like, but not limited to:

a)   Acquisition of books and documents of relevance to the research topic in case these are not available in the library. These would be treated as the property of the Institution’s library and after purchase and accession, may be issued to the concerned Department/PI as per institutional rules.

b)   Chemicals/consumable items required for research work

c)    Charges for specialized investigations for which facilities do not exist in the host institute

d)   Publication Charges/reprints/off-prints of research papers published as an outcome of the research.

e)    Data-entry charges

f)     Printing of questionnaire/s

g)    Computer utilities, charges for analysis of data (computer charges)

h)   Typing of research reports

i)     Expenses in connection with the preparation of the final report

j)     Petrol, oil, lubricants (POL)

k)   Communication charges

l)     Grant cannot be used for purchase of furniture items/office equipment


12.  Contingency grant:


For expenditure under contingency grant exceeding Rs. 25000/- per annum, detailed breakdown should be given.


 All expenditure and non- expendable articles acquired for work of the project should be purchased in accordance with the procedure in vogue in the host institutions. For permanent and semi-permanent assets acquired solely or mainly out of the grant, a separate audited record in the form of register shall be maintained by the Institute. The term “assets” means movable property where the value exceed Rs.1000. Separate assets registers for items costing more than Rs. 20,000/- and less than Rs. 20,000- may be maintained.


13.  Equipment

a.      The Council would also provide equipment(s) for the conduct of the study provided it has been approved by the appropriate Committee. There is no upper ceiling on the amount to be sanctioned for purchase of equipment (s).  This would vary on the nature, scope and need of the Project.

b.      All equipment should be purchased according to the rules and procedures of the Institutions where the project is to be carried out.

c.      Equipment procured through the ICMR grant should bear a label “ICMR funded”.

d.      On completion of the study a list of all equipment procured from the project funds along with cost, date of purchase, and suggestion for disposal of the items should be sent to ICMR HQs

e.      Equipment costing less than Rs. 20,000 are generally allowed to be retained by the Institute, while in case of those costing more than Rs. 20000, the Council will take the final decision after reviewing the request the request/ suggestions from the PI.


14.  Annual Progress Report


a.      Annual Report is to be submitted by the PI in the prescribed format(format is available at ICMR web).The Annual Progress Report should be submitted about three months prior to the completion of the financial year end to enable its evaluation and decisions regarding subsequent grant release. The subsequent Annual Reports will have to be submitted till the end of project period.

b.      The progress of the project would be evaluated by ICMR either by peer review or by an Expert Committee.

          c.      The scheme will not be renewed for the next financial year unless the Council receives the progress report in time.

d.      A delay in receipt of the report in time for consideration by the Committee may lead to termination of the project.

e.      The PI may be asked to present the progress at the meeting of the review/expert committee, if considered necessary.

f.       The suggestion and views of the committee and mid-course correction, if any, would be conveyed to the PI from time to time for compliance and effective conduct of the project.


15.  Annual utilization certificate


a.      Each year, a simple statement of accounts giving the funds received and expenditure incurred as of end of March every year needs to be submitted for release of the first and subsequent installments for the duration of the project.

b.      Unspent balance would be adjusted in the first installment for the next year.

c.      An audited statement would be essential for release of second installment and subsequent installments of the annual grant from second onwards.


16.  Final Project Completion Report


a.      At the completion of the project, the final report in the prescribed format will have to be submitted.

b.      The report should be submitted not later than three months of the date of completion of the project.

c.      10% grant would be withheld for release until the receipt of final project report.


17. Final settlement of the Accounts


The final settlement of the Accounts will be done at ICMR HQs only after the receipt of the following:

a.      Final audited statement of expenditure.

b.      Final utilization certificate.

c.      List of equipment procured from the project mentioning the cost, date of purchase and suggestions for disposal of all items purchased under equipment.

d.  The unspent grant paid by ICMR shall be refunded by the institution as and                when the investigator discontinues a scheme midway or does not follow the    detailed technical programme laid down and approved.


18. Overhead expenses


a.                  Will be restricted to 5% of the total cost of the project.

b.                  Overhead expenditure will not be granted on equipment and travel allowances.



19. Auditors

 The Council would normally accept reports audited by  statutary auditors. The Council may also accept statement of accounts audited by Chartered Accountants approved by or registered with CAG and/ or Ministry of Health & Family Welfare.


20.  Duration of schemes

Requests for project extension beyond approved duration would not be entertained routinely. However, if interesting/important leads are likely to emerge that need to be followed up, then a valid justification for an extension should be submitted by the PI three months before the expected completion of the project clearly mentioning the period of extension with justification.


21. Change of PI


a.      PIs are encouraged to have a co-investigator in the project.


b.      In case the PI leaves the project an eligible co-investigator could be considered as the PI subject to recommendation of the PI, the Head of the Institution and the approval of ICMR. Such a request should be sent well in advance.


c.      In case the PI is shifting to any other institution, the co-investigator could be made PI or the project could be transferred to the new Institutions with prior approval from ICMR.


d.      The host institution has an important role to play in the above. The institute/Principal Investigator will have to inform ICMR of any changes and in consultation with ICMR takes steps to ensure successful continuation completion of the project before relieving the principal investigator. 

    22.  Intellectual Property Rights

All new intellectual property viz. patents, copyright, design, etc. generated as part of the research supported by the ICMR would belong to the Council. All raw data (in all forms) should be made available/accessible to ICMR at the completion of the project along with submission of the final report.


    23. Publication of Result/Presentation of Papers


The research papers and publications based on the result of the research project should clearly acknowledge the assistance by the ICMR along with IRIS ID number. Copies/ reprints of the papers published should be forwarded to ICMR as and when published.