A girl from Aurangabad named Diksha Shinde claimed to be selected on the Minority Serving Institution (MSI) Fellowships Virtual Panel of NASA, as reported by ANI.
The student has claimed that she was selected for the 2021 MSI Fellowships Virtual Panel in June after the International Journal of Scientific and Engineering Research accepted her research paper in May 2021.
Many people in social media have expressed their views and doubts about the claims in which many unbelievable details were found.
After the doubts were raised, ANI shared screenshots of alleged correspondence of NASA with Diksha but these screenshots also do not clarify the doubts and instead create more questions.
NASA does have a MSI Fellowships programme but the requirements for the program are much higher than the current qualification of the girl.
According to their official website, to submit a proposal, the person must have already attended an MSI, must be a US citizen or a national who holds a bachelor’s degree earned before August 31, and they must enrol in a master’s or doctoral degree program before 1 September, 2021. This clearly shows that a class 10 student is not eligible for this program.
She claimed her paper on black holes was accepted by the International Journal of Scientific and Engineering Research but the website of the IJSER has no paper published in her name. No paper was found till now written by Diksha Shinde.
According to the website, the cost of publishing a research paper is 65 Euros, however, the rate for students and research scholars is 45 Euros. Which means even if her paper was published somewhere by the journal, she had to pay an amount of ₹4000.
A certificate issued to Diksha is supposed to be fake. The certificate has the signatures of NASA CEO and President James Bridenstine and Department Chair James Frederick. But NASA does not have the designation of CEO. Bill Nelson is the current administrator of NASA.
It is found that James Frederick Bridenstine was the administrator in NASA from 2013 to 2018, and some people believe this name was split into two names to create the fake ‘certificate’ issued to Diksha Shinde by the fraudster.