The state government is planning not to participate in the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) 2013 for admissions to medical and dental colleges in Madhya Pradesh.
It is likely to forward a proposal of holding a separate entrance examination at state level soon, a step that might land it into a legal trouble.
As for the medical and dental courses aspirants from the state, if the proposal goes through, it would mean that they would have to appear for two entrance tests instead of one. They would have to appear for the state government's pre-medical test separately for seeking admission to the colleges in the state, while they would have to appear for NEET, if they also want to keep their options open regarding other medical colleges across the country.
One of the main purposes of holding a countrywide common entrance test was to save the students from trouble of attempting multiple admission tests for national level and state level institutes. Apart from this, the common test is expected to ensure quality and equality of medical education in all parts of country.
For the academic session 2013-14, admissions to all the government and private medical and dental colleges in country would be done through a common entrance test - the NEET 2013 to be conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education on May 5, 2013. The test is being conducted at the behest of the Medical Council of India (MCI), after the Supreme Court gave a go ahead to its proposal last year.
Because of the Supreme Court intervention, it is binding upon the states to participate in the national level test.
Yet some of the states including Madhya Pradesh are dithering on the decision probably owing to apprehensions related to losing control over the admission process. Education is considered a state matter and final decision related to the sector lies with the state governments. Other states that are reportedly planning to forgo the NEET include Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and Odisha.
In this context, the state government is planning to propose to the union government that it plans to go ahead with the state level pre-medical test (PMT) for admissions in state colleges for the academic session 2013-14 too. "A proposal is in the offing, though it is not final yet," director of medical education (DME) Dr SC Tiwari told HT.
When asked the reason for such a decision, he said the decision is taken at the topmost level and he would not be able to comment on it. Sources however said that the decision might be owing to political considerations and apprehension of losing control.
POST GRADUDATE ADMISSION: Meanwhile, the national-level common entrance test for postgraduate (PG) admissions (NEET-PG) would be conducted by the National Board of Education (NBE) as a computer-based (online) test. The test would be held from November 23 to December 6 at 33 cities of the country including Bhopal and Indore in MP. Monday (November 12) is the last date for online registration for the test. The details are available on the website www.nbe.gov.in/neetpg.
However, the Association of Private Dental and Medical Colleges (APDMC) of MP would be holding a separate PG entrance test - Pre-PG DMAT (dental and medical admission test) on January 6 for admissions to 50% PG seats in the medical and dental colleges of the state according to a Supreme Court ruling.