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Tamil Nadu’s case against NEET

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September 16, 2021

Why in news?

The latest Bill passed by Tamil Nadu Assembly exempting the State from the NEET for admission to UG medical courses was returned by the President of India without his assent.

What is the background of NEET?

  • The Indian Medical Council (IMC) Act states that there shall be a uniform entrance examination to all medical educational institutions at UG level and PG level through such designated authority.
  • Union government issued an Ordinance in 2016 postponing the introduction of NEET to 2017  due to the opposition from many quarters.

What is Tamil Nadu’s stand on NEET?

  • Tamil Nadu government issued an order in 2017 providing for the reservation of 85% of the seats for students passed out from the State board which was struck down by the Madras High Court.
  • Later the State government had brought in a law providing 7.5% reservation in medical seats, but with NEET as a criterion.
  • Tamil Nadu government had appointed a committee under Justice A.K. Rajan to look into the question of desirability of having an examination as a prerequisite for MBBS admissions.
  • Views of the committee:
    1. Majority were not in favour of the NEET requirement
    2. Higher secondary examination of the State board itself was good enough for the selection of students for MBBS seats.
    3. NEET only worked against underprivileged government school students, and had profited coaching centres and rich.
  • So, Tamil Nadu government amended the central act assuming  that medical college admissions will come under Concurrent List (Entry 25 of List III) for which assent has not been given by the President.

Neet & Tamilnadu

What is the dilemma now?

  • The question is whether the State government can exempt Section 10D of the IMC Act, which is a parliamentary law that falls under the Central List (Entry 66).
  • The introduction of internal reservation for government school students is also under challenge before the Madras High Court.
  • No other State in India has sought an exemption from NEET and therefore the possibility of exempting Tamil Nadu is low.
  • Also, if exempted, the fate of all-India quota of 15% and the condition of Tamil Nadu students who do not avail this quota by not writing the exam is a question.
  • Tamil Nadu government is of the view to conceive a better system with a fair admission process preserving merit and preventing rampant commercialisation.

 

Source: The Hindu

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