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Ordinance To Bypass Sc Mandate On Neet?

FPJ Bureau | Updated on: Friday, May 31, 2019, 03:25 PM IST

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The Ordinance will restore the right of the state governments and individual institutions to hold their own entrance tests for the last time this year

NEW DELHI : The Centre is convening an all-party meeting next week to explore the possibility of issuing an ordinance to bypass the Supreme Court’s ruling mandating the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) mandatory for students seeking admission into MBBS and BDS courses anywhere in the country.

The Ordinance will restore the right of the state governments and individual institutions to hold their own entrance tests for the last time this year to facilitate the students who could not get time to prepare for NEET made mandatory at the last minute. A long-term decision on NEET will be taken later, sources said.

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The concerned state governments that had unsuccessfully pleaded with the Apex Court early this week for a relaxation from NEET at least for this year, may also be invited to the meeting.

Instead of moving the Apex Court once again since it has already gone on the summer vacation from Friday, the government felt an easier Ordinance route in deference to the demand of the MPs cutting across party lines asking the government this week to protect the students who had prepared to appear in the examination in the regional languages and may not be able to take NEET in English or Hindi.

The government hopes the Ordinance route would be widely acceptable and it would have a smooth passage in the next session of Parliament if endorsed by an all-party meeting.

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The Supreme Court had ruled on April 28 that starting this academic session, students would have to appear for NEET to seek admission into any medical or dental college in the country. It refused appeals to put off the exam till next year and later ruled that only NEET would be valid for admissions into MBBS and BDS courses.

The court dismissed all appeals of the state governments and educational institutions and ruled that any exam other than NEET is invalid. It declared the All India Pre-Medical Test (AIPMT), conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and scheduled on May 1 shall be treated as the first phase of NEET. Since all medical aspirants in the country would have applied for it, it ordered NEET-2 on July 24 and later gave relaxation to those appearing in NEET-1 to take NEET-2 to improve their percentage. NEET is to be held only in English and Hindi.

The Supreme Court ignored the pleading of the Centre to hold NEET in six other regional languages in view of the CBSE expressing difficulties and fearing leakage and the Medical Council of India (MCI) insisting that the entrance test should be only in English since all medical education has to be in English only.

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While the CBSE had held the first edition of NEET in 2013 in Telugu, Gujarati, Marathi, Tamil, Bengali and Assamese apart from Hindi and English, it is unwilling to do so this year because of shortage of time. The Supreme Court had quashed the NEET in 2013, a verdict that it overturned last month on a review petition.

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Published on: Saturday, May 14, 2016, 12:40 AM IST