Mumbai: The NEET postgraduate aspirants for the year 2018-19 have stood up to the state government’s decision of making the one-year rural service mandatory for PG aspirants. The argument given by them is that the announcement comes two months ahead of the upcoming NEET PG exam, for which candidates have already started preparations. If the ruling is implemented by the government for this year, the aspirants who sit for the Entrance Test would be disqualified on the basis of ineligibility. An online application initiated by a parent of one of the NEET-PG aspirants has already received 1,600 consenting signatures.
It is mandatory for undergraduate and post-graduate students to undergo a 1-year compulsory rural service in a public health department hospital of the state. However, more often than not students are found to skip or postpone the compulsory in-service tenure.
The new rule is being implemented to ensure that students complete the rural service tenure.
However, apprehension has been expressed earlier, by the medical fraternity regarding injustice being done to students from public medical colleges, as their private counterparts will finish their degrees in five-and-a-half years.
Medical Dialogues team had earlier reported about the dilemma faced by 2017 PG aspirants. With less than 3 months left for the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET)-PG, a government resolution has been issued by the state’s medical education department making it compulsory for MBBS graduates from public medical colleges to submit bond free certificates in order to qualify for a post-graduation seat, indeed puts many at a tough spot.
The report spoke of the Government resolution passed regarding the same seeing all PG aspirants in a state of shock, as this last minute announcement would result in their months of study for NEET PG going a waste. MBBS pass outs are supposed to pursue their rural bond service for 1 year after their 5 ½ yr MBBS course.
Though the new rule aims at keeping a check on students skipping rural service, the MBBS graduates of the 2017 batch look at it as a disadvantage, as they have decided to do their rural postings, after the completion of their post-graduation.
According to the Government Resolution (GR) issued by the Department of Medical Education and Drugs on October 12, the new rule will be in force for admissions taking place for the 2018-19 academic session.
Indian Express reports that an ‘Online Petition’ against the rule being implemented for the academic session 2018-19 has been started by Mr. Muzaffar Khan, a parent of a Yavatmal Government Medical College, an aspirant for this year. The Department of Medical Education and Drugs has also received an online complaint, regarding the issue, from Mr. Khan.
Speaking on the issue to the Indian Express he stated : “We have asked the government to reconsider its decision. The announcement came very late and my son had already started preparing for NEET. He will lose a year if the rule is to be applied.”
The Directorate of Medical Education and Research (DMER) is believed to have written to the department to make amendments to the GR and implement the new rule from the 2019-20 academic year.
“Since the bond service does not apply to graduates of private medical colleges, they will be able to apply for PG, “ Mr. Khan further added. He threatened legal recourse if his request to the department did not bear fruit.
Director, DMER Pravin Shinghare, said, “It is true that the GR, as it stands today, favors graduates from private institutes. We have already apprised the department of the matter.”
Mr. Sanjay Deshmukh, Medical Education, Secretary, meanwhile, clarified that though in principle the rules had been laid down, the timeline was yet to be finalized. “By next week, we will come up with a decision on whether to implement it for the academic year 2018-19 or 2019-20,” he told IE.