Chennai: The DMK urged the Tamil Nadu government to approach the court to get the President’s assent for Bills passed by the Assembly exempting the state from NEET, in case the Centre had put them in “cold storage.”
Raising the issue in the Assembly, Leader of the Opposition MK Stalin sought to know the current status of the Bills exempting the state from National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test passed last year.
“In case the centre had put the Bills in cold storage without taking action over it deliberately, a petition should be filed in the Supreme Court to get Presidential assent seeking a direction to the Centre,” he said.
In February 2017, Tamil Nadu government had adopted two Bills seeking to exempt the state from the purview of NEET and to ensure continuation of medical admissions based on 12th standard marks.
Replying, Health Minister C Vijayabaskar said “the president has withheld the Bills,” adding the government has sought to know the reasons from the centre.
The minister said the government was ready to face the issue legally as well.
Assailing the Centre for bringing in the national test by not respecting the state’s rights, Stalin said it had shattered the dreams of poor and rural students to become doctors.
Alleging that the test posed a big threat to social justice putting Tamil Nadu students in stress, he said there were confusions concerning NEET starting from the question paper to examination centres.
It may be recalled that translation errors were reported in the NEET question paper, and several aspirants from Tamil Nadu had to go to states including Kerala to take the exam.
When Stalin referred to allegations that some students belonging to other states attempted getting medical admissions in Tamil Nadu by getting nativity certificates, Vijayabaskar said rules have been tightened to avert such a situation.
He said as many as 12 new provisions have been included to see to it that only students belonging to Tamil Nadu got admissions.
“Barring the All-India quota (15 per cent), there is no scope for students from other states to get admissions (in Tamil Nadu quota/85 per cent),” he said.
When the DMK leader said reports claimed that no financial allocation has been made for setting up AIIMS in Tamil Nadu though the location (Madurai) has been finalised, the Minister said it will be made.
“Financial sanction will be made after the (Union) Cabinet approval for the Detailed Project Report, (which is being finalised),” he said.
Vijayabaskar said Tamil Nadu had also immediately sent to the Centre minutes of a meeting signifying compliance to the five conditions set out by the Central government to establish AIIMS in Madurai.
Among the conditions are four-lane access road from the national highway and dedicated power supply.