Newspapers are full of stories suggesting that the Government is mulling an exit tax on IIT/IIM graduates if they leave India. There can be valid reasons driven by the economics of the matter, but I have a slightly different viewpoint on the way this is being proposed and would be administered.
The Indian Government subsidizes education in IITs and IIMs. When someone goes abroad and works there, in effect the Indian Government is subsidizing the research and development in foreign countries. There is an inherent motivation in the policy to recover the costs associatied with the subsidy as well.
One thing which I fail to understand is why is the Government still subsidizing the IITs and IIMs? They have been around for a while now, have a global brand image, have influential and connected alumni and have a proven track record. Surely they do not need the financial doles that are being meted out to them and if needed, they can raise as much resources as they require. When Harvard has a corpus of a few billion dollars, I see no reason why an IIT cannot be even independent if not run a surplus. If there is a corpus available, the students (whoever needy) can be financed by the institutes themselves ridding the government of the burden of the subsidy.
Here is the real reason: IITs/IIMs are still under the control of the Government and the Babus. No one wants them to stand up on their own. Instead of setting up more institutes and expanding the knowledge base, the policy is an attempt to keep the stranglehold on IITs and IIMs by controlling their grants. Instead of doing better things, this silly step is designed to protect the turf rather than to serve the nation. Even if we keep the nightmares faced in the implementation of this proposal aside, it should be condemned and debated for its flawed intent and ulterior motives.
Disclaimer: I am a graduate of IIT.