Bagging a seat in state-run medical or dental courses is set to get difficult this year with a 3.8% drop in the overall pass percentage at the Maharashtra Common Entrance Test (MH-CET).
The Directorate of Medical Education and Research (DMER) that announced the results late on Tuesday night recorded an overall pass percentage for the state at 16.98, which was 20.8% in 2015.
Of the 3.97 lakh aspirants that appeared for the state common entrance test, a total of 46,797 aspirants across the state are eligible for admissions to mere 2,810 seats available in the government-run medical 2,570 seats and dental (240 seats) institutes.
This means a significant number of aspirants will now have to appear for the second phase of the National Eligibility Cum Entrance Test (NEET) on July 24.
“Almost 90-95% students will end up appearing for NEET, including those who are unsure about their chances of bagging government seats. Except for the first few hundreds, the central government’s ordinance has not come to the rescue of the students,” said Rajesh Jain, state head for Parents Association of Medical Students (PAMS). The ordinance had exempted NEET for admissions to government seats in medical and dental colleges.
With stakes running high, students are worried about their chances of bagging a government seat.
“I’ve scored 194/200 but I’m still not sure if I’ll get a seat in a government institute. I’ll have to continue preparing for NEET as well,” said Saish Jadhav.
While the MH-CET results last year were the best in five years, this year, has once again seen a dip in the overall pass percentage.
“The syllabus wasn’t any different and the marking pattern remained the same as well. So, it’s difficult to find the reason behind this dip,” said Dr Pravin Shingare, director, DMER. “The merit list will be announced after 10 days.”
Parents and several educationists said most students had taken the MH-CET under the fear of not knowing its worth in the future because of an ongoing Supreme Court hearing that had first directed that NEET be made compulsory, which could have affected students’ preparation for the exams and resulted in low scores.
While students already know their individual scores after their optical mark reader (OMR) answer sheets were made public last week, the results will set a merit ranking and give a clear idea on how many students will be eligible for medical and engineering seats in the state.
On May 24, the DMER had released the OMR sheets of 3.97 lakh candidates, who took the MH-CET on May 5. Rishab Rawat, 17, from Mumbai scored a perfect 200 in the medical stream, based on the OMR sheets.
This year, the Supreme Court had made it mandatory for aspirants seeking a seat in medical and dental institutes to take the NEET, as their CET scores would not be considered.
This had left many students anxious as MH-CET follows the state board syllabus, while NEET follows the CBSE. The Centre’s ordinance then exempted NEET for admissions to state-run medical and dental colleges. Next year on, NEET will be the only entrance examination considered for admissions to all medical and dental institutes across the country.
The Directorate of Medical Education and Research divides Maharashtra into three regions — Marathwada, Vidarbha and the rest of Maharashtra, which includes Mumbai
Of the 1.62 lakh medical aspirants, who took the exam from the rest of the state, which includes Mumbai, 22,700 are eligible for admissions to government-run medical and dental institutes
Of the 55,034 students who took the exam from Marathwada region, 11,890 (21.61%) are eligible, while 12,203 (20.91%) of the 58,370 students who took the exam are eligible from Vidarbha.