Students expecting a common engineering and medical entrance examination from 2011 will have to take the tests separately.
The Ministry of Human Resource Development has decided to allow the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) to hold the All India Engineering Entrance Examination (AIEEE) and the All India Pre-Medical
Test (AIPMT) separately next year, government sources told the Hindustan Times.
The decision came following the health ministry’s opposition to the plan announced by HRD minister Kapil Sibal. “We still maintain that the test should be common and we are hopeful that we can convince the health ministry by 2012. But because of their opposition, we were running out of time to work on a common test for 2011,” a senior HRD ministry official said.
Keeping in mind the complexity in holding multiple examinations, Sibal had announced his ministry’s decision in June 2010, to hold a single entrance examination for engineering and pre-medical entrance examinations for the students after passing out XIIth standard from 2011.
It was aimed at reducing the students’ workload besides cutting down on the cost of holding these examinations.
The AIEEE is the world’s largest such examination. The National Institutes of Technology and other Central engineering colleges admit students on the basis of their AIEEE scores. Even states fill 50% of their seats in government colleges through AIEEE. Over 12 lakh students appeared for the AIEEE last year.
Similarly, most of the Central medical schools admit students on the basis of their AIPMT scores. States, too, fill 50% of their seats in government medical colleges through AIPMT. It is the largest medical examination in India. Many students appear for both the AIPMT and AIEEE to keep their academic options open.
Sibal’s plan involved allowing such students to appear for just physics and chemistry papers just once, along with maths and biology, instead of appearing for physics and chemistry independently in the AIEEE and the AIPMT. However, the health ministry has opposed the plan and even opposed the move in the Supreme Court.