STUDENTS SEEKING admission to medical and dental courses in the state this year should be exempted from appearing for the National Eligibility Entrance Test (NEET), state Education Minister Vinod Tawde proposed to the Central government on Monday.
Tawde, who met Union Health Minister J P Nadda in New Delhi along with 22 other state health ministers, said the Centre should review the Supreme Court verdict that has made NEET compulsory for medical aspirants.
He urged the Centre to allow aspirants from Maharashtra to seek admission through the state common entrance test.
“Urged Central Govt for an ordinance to stop compulsory implementation of #NEET this year which was positively heeded by the Health Minister,” tweeted Tawde after the meeting.
Tawde met Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, HRD Minister Smriti Irani and Urban Development Minister Venkaiah Naidu to apprise them of the situation. The Supreme Court verdict has rendered invalid the Maharashtra Common Entrance Test (MH CET) scores, leaving the fate of about 2.8 lakh medical aspirants in the state to their NEET scores. The students now have a little over a month to prepare for NEET phase II scheduled on July 24.
The state education minister is hopeful of getting the ordinance passed in a couple of days.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has assured parents that he will take the matter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. While Fadnavis said he will meet Modi and try to resolve the issue, he appealed to students to continue with preparations for NEET II.
Fadnavis said, “Now, we have to realise that NEET is a reality. We are trying our best to provide maximum help to students to cope with the curriculum.”
The parents, along with Maharashtra Navnirman Sena chief Raj Thackeray, had met the CM on Monday to seek his intervention.
BJP MLA Raj Purohit, too, has shown solidarity with the parents and written to Union minister Irani. “I have written to Union minister Smriti Irani for requesting the President of India to issue an ordinance to help the students,” said Purohit.
Meanwhile, parents will continue their protest by forming a human chain from Nariman Point on Tuesday. But a source said, “We cannot challenge the Supreme Court in this matter as all states had given in writing they would switch to NEET…
The assurance was given by all the states including Maharashtra in 2011-12.”