NO Exemption from NEET to Tamil Nadu, Puducherry: HRD Minister
New Delhi: The Union Government has rejected the proposals sent by the Tamil Nadu and Puducherry governments requesting an exemption to students from appearing in National Eligibility cum Entrance Test, NEET for both UG (MBBS, BDS) and PG medical (MD, MS, MDS) courses.
This information was shared by Union HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' in response to a written question in the Lok Sabha recently by Vaithilingam, M Selvaraj, A Raja, Manickam Tagore and Rajeshbhai Chudasama.
The Minister was asked the following questions:
- whether the Government has received any proposals from State Governments regarding NEET exam and if so, the details thereof, State/UT-wise including Tamil Nadu;
- whether Joint Entrance Exam for admission to engineering/NEET would be held twice a year and if so, the details thereof;
- the details of students appeared/ passed NEET exam during the last three years, State/UT-wise including Tamil Nadu;
- whether a large number of medical aspirant students ended their lives after failing to clear the NEET exam for admission in MBBS course across the country and if so, the details thereof for the last three years, State/UTwise including Tamil Nadu;
- whether the Government has any proposal to stop NEET exam;
- if so, the details thereof and if not, the reasons therefor; and
- the steps taken/being by the Government to protect interest of the students in this regard?
To these questions, the HRD Minister Nishank replied, "Medical Education comes under the purview of the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, which has informed that requests have been received from the State Governments of Puducherry and Tamil Nadu to exempt students from appearing in National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) for undergraduate and postgraduate medical admissions."
However, Section 10D of the Indian Medical Council Act, 1956 prescribes conducting of a uniform entrance examination, namely NEET for medical admissions. Since the provisions of the above Act apply across the country without exemption, no relaxation was given to the States, he informed.
NEET is conducted once a year in pen and paper mode whereas the Joint Entrance Examination (Main) is conducted twice a year as the Computer Based Test (CBT). NEET was conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) during the last three years. State/UT-wise information of students appeared/passed during the last three years is annexed.
With regard to students ending their lives due to failure to clear NEET, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare has informed that they have no information in this regard.
Medical Dialogues has been extensively reporting about the fight of the state seeking exemption from NEET.
NEET, which was declared illegal and unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in 2013, was restored in April 2016, by a five-judge constitution bench that allowed the Centre and the Medical Council of India (MCI) to implement the common entrance test.
In 2016, following requests from states like Tamil Nadu, government colleges were granted exemption from NEET for a year. This ended in 2017.
The Tamil Nadu Assembly had passed two Bills with the support of all parties in 2017 for the state to be exempted from the test.
Earlier in October 2018, the DMK President MK Stalin had asked the Central Government to scrap the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) for medical admission, as it was affecting the rural students.
He said that though the BJP led union government had announced that the NEET exam could be written in all languages including Tamil, there was a wrong translation in the question paper. He said that in the last NEET exam, more than 24,000 Tamil Nadu students were affected due to a wrong translation in the question paper and that the number of rural students writing the NEET exam had been reduced completely.
Mr Stalin said that due to this governmental failure, some of the students committed suicide.
Recently, Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) hit out at the Centre and staged a walkout in both houses of Parliament for rejecting two resolutions passed by Tamil Nadu Assembly seeking an exemption to the state from writing NEET.