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regular-article-logo Monday, 15 April 2024

NEET tussle between Tamil Nadu and central government reaches Parliament

During Question Hour the Rajya Sabha, DMK leader Tiruchi Siva urges Dharmendra Pradhan to explain Centre’s stand on a bill seeking exemption for Tamil Nadu students from National Eligibility cum Entrance Test

Our Special Correspondent New Delhi Published 14.12.23, 05:45 AM
Dharmendra Pradhan.

Dharmendra Pradhan. File picture

The tussle between Tamil Nadu and the Centre over the medical exam National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) reached Parliament on Wednesday but both sides stood their ground.

During Question Hour in the Rajya Sabha, DMK leader Tiruchi Siva urged Union education minister Dharmendra Pradhan to explain the Centre’s stand on a bill seeking exemption for Tamil Nadu students from the NEET. The bill passed unanimously by the Tamil Nadu Assembly is under consideration of the Union government after the governor sent it for the President’s assent.

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However, Pradhan rejected the contention of the DMK that poor and meritorious students were disadvantaged by the NEET.

“After the NEET was brought, bright students who are unable to afford private coaching are not getting success. The Tamil Nadu Assembly passed a bill unanimously, which was under the consideration of the Centre. We have sought exemption from the NEET. What is your stand on this issue?” Siva said.

Pradhan said the NEET came into effect on the recommendation of the Supreme Court.

“When all the states had their own entrance tests, the pattern varied. Taking that into consideration, the Supreme Court directed a uniform pattern. This is an inadequate argument that bright students are unable to do well in the NEET,” Pradhan said.

He said he visited the Navodaya Vidyalaya in tribal-dominated Nabarangpur in Odisha, one of the poorest districts in the country, and found that students had got admission to institutions through NEET and JEE,” Pradhan said.

“They are not coming to Kota (the city in Rajasthan known for coaching centres). This year’s NEET topper is from Tamil Nadu. This argument is prejudiced,” Pradhan said.

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