Mumbai: Around 253 students who have been protesting for the past two weeks at Azad Maidan over the issue of admissions to postgraduate (PG) medical and dental courses under the Maratha quota, withdrew their agitation on Tuesday. Students will now be able secure admissions to the respective colleges as the deadline is 5pm on Wednesday, according to the state Common Entrance Test (CET) cell.
This decision has come following the ordinance signed by the governor of Maharashtra on Monday, enabling students to seek admissions under the Socially and Educationally Backward Classes (SEBC) category for courses which require the passing of the National Eligibility Entrance Test (NEET) or any other national entrance test.
These students are using the category to seek admissions under the Maratha quota. Nandini Gurav, a student, said, “We have very little time to secure our admissions as the state CET cell has given us only two days. However, we will do so as per the guidelines of the ordinance.”
On the other hand, students from the open category have decided to challenge the matter in the court again. Vinayak Pawar, a student, said, “Students are using the SEBC category as a tool to secure admissions under the Maratha quota. Due to reservation for SEBC category, we will not be able to secure seats despite scoring high marks, as all the seats will be filled under the quota. This is unfair, as admissions to medical and dental courses should be based on merit.”
Maratha students started the protest after the Supreme Court (SC) upheld the decision of the Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court (HC) to consider Maratha quota inapplicable for admissions to medical and dental colleges for the current academic year. Now, though these students are relieved, the fight for the students from the open category has just begun.