After MBBS, the Punjab government will conduct its own entrance exam to fill post-graduate seats in medical colleges of the state for the 2016-17 session.
For two years, the government has filled all seats through the national eligibility entrance test (NEET-PG) conducted by the National Board Examination. But the for the past sometime, postgraduate aspirants from the state have been representing that the NEET is a tough exam that has led to candidates from outside Punjab filling seats in the state.
Medical education and research secretary Hussan Lal confirmed the development. He said that the decision had been taken in the interest of students of the state.
Lal said that the dates of the fresh exam will be announced shortly.
Initially, Punjab was one of the 12 states that had agreed to fill PG seats on the basis of NEET-PG two years ago.
With Punjab opting out of the ambit of NEET, only seven states are left following NEET, which would be conducted from December 2 to December 8. It includes Orissa, Madhya Pradesh, Goa, Chandigarh, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Haryana.
There are around 500 postgraduate medical seats in various government and private medical colleges in the state. Of them, around 250 PG seats are with government colleges.
The government doctors’ association has welcomed the move. “We have been demanding this as the NEET is too difficult to qualify for state candidates,” said Dr Gagandeep Shergill, general secretary of the PCMS Association, Punjab. The PCMS doctors of the state have in-service quota of around 100 seats in PG admissions.
Instead of the All India Pre-Medical Test (AIPMT) in May, the Punjab government had conducted its own medical entrance examination for admitting students in MBBS and BDS courses in state colleges.