Private medical colleges, varsities against compulsory NEET
Address concerns before going ahead with national entrance test, they say
Nearly 30 private medical colleges and deemed-to-be universities in six states, including Karnataka, will soon make representations to the Centre against making the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) compulsory.
The decision was arrived at a brain-storming session of chancellors and vice-chancellors of the medical institutions in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, and Maharashtra organised by the Education Promotion Society for India (EPSI), a not-for-profit and autonomous organisation, in the city on Wednesday.
The meet discussed various proposed legislations and regulations affecting the conduct of medical and allied educational programmes and institutions.
According to Dr Viswan- athan, president of EPSI and Chancellor of the Vellore Institute of Technology University, the senior secondary curriculum varied among different states. Unless there was uniformity in the curriculum across all 24 boards, a common examination would not work, he told reporters after the deliberations concluded.
The common exam will also pose challenges to students from rural areas and those who cannot afford expensive coaching classes. In short, the exam is “not student-friendly”.
“If a student misses just one exam (NEET), he/she will miss the whole year.
But if NEET is made optional, students can attempt other exams,” he explained. That NEET will be conducted on large scale should also be kept in mind. There are nearly 42,000 MBBS seats in government and private colleges across the country and lakhs of students apply for them., he said.
EPSI will submit a memorandum to the Centre in this regard and also become a party to cases filed before the Supreme Court against NEET, Viswanathan said.
He said the Karnataka government had initially resisted the Centre’s pressure on NEET, but relented later. As a preparation, the Department of Pre-University Education (DPUE) adopted the National Curriculum Framework (NCF) for I PU this academic year. According to Viswanathan, the scheme will work only when the quality of education is improved from class 1.
“NCF should be adopted right from primary school,” he said. The EPSI president also seemed to disagree with the government’s decision to make one-year rural service mandatory for MBBS students. In his view, it should be made mandatory only for those who study with government aid. Other students should be spared, he suggested.
H Chaturvedi, alternate president, EPSI and director, Birla Institute of Management Technology, justified the participation of representatives only from the six states, saying southern and western parts of the country accounted for 70 per cent of the total medical seats in the country.
All participating universities have decided to oppose the National Council for Human Resources in Health (NCHRH) Bill, 2011, in totality.