A medical student evacuated from Ukraine on Saturday said that the medical studies in Ukraine cost less compared to India so more students prefer it. Jayesh Sarmalkar, a third-year student at a medical university in Lviv, Ukraine, said, "We are two different countries so the teaching pattern is different but medicine studies are almost the same. In India, it takes Rs 1 crore for an MBBS student to graduate but in Ukraine, it costs only Rs 30 to Rs 40 lakhs. Government colleges are affordable in India but seats are less and private institutions here increase fees gradually every year. There has to be a structure to monitor this." Jayesh said that the final year students returning from Ukraine will have to appear for the Foreign Medical Graduates Examination (FMGE) which is one of the mandatory requirements for an Indian citizen who has a medical degree from a college outside India to practice medicine in the country.
"The academic year of the last year students will end soon and these students have to take the FMGE, it is one of the toughest exams in India. I request the government to increase the number of seats and allow the students to continue their studies," Jayesh stated. He said, "Two days back my Ukrainian university has informed me that they are going to start online classes soon to complete the studies before the academic year changes. But the war is still going on, many universities have been completely destroyed, so we don't the exact situation."
Achita, Jayesh's mother said they attempted to admit her son to colleges in the country but they were expensive. "We tried in India in many colleges, but we couldn't afford it here so we sent him to Ukraine to pursue Medicine. The course is the same in Ukraine too but if we see the fee structure, there is a huge difference". Adding to it, she further said that the government must look into it and work on the fee structure in the Indian medical colleges.
"Not only for the middle class but many medical colleges in India are not affordable for families running a business as well. I would request the government to work on the fee structure here so that our money remains here in India."
Approximate 18,000 students who returned from Ukraine had registered in 33 medical universities of Ukraine to pursue medical courses. Out of this, approximately 2000 students were from Maharashtra, according to the Maharashtra government.
Maharashtra Medical Education Minister Amit Deshmukh, while addressing a meeting on Wednesday, said, "We are working on alternative strategies to help these medical students continue to pursue their medical careers."