With the main aims of “ensuring social justice, upholding equality and equal opportunity, and protecting all vulnerable communities of students from being discriminated against” at its core as per the government, Tamil Nadu assembly has passed a bill against the national-level NEET examination. As per the bill, admissions will no longer be provided through NEET to the undergraduate medical degree courses in the state, but on the basis of the marks obtained by the students in the qualifying examination, through normalization methods instead. The bill against the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) was moved in the Tamil Nadu Assembly by CM MK Stalin himself. Notably, the bill also is also seeking a permanent exemption from the central medical exam for students belonging to the state.

The government has also claimed that this step will facilitate the targeted students to the mainstream of medical and dental education, therefore ensuring a robust public health care in the state. Among several other claims, the statement of objects and reasons reportedly also mentions that “the extra examination that the students are compelled to face, other than the qualifying examination has caused huge financial burden to the students belonging to socially and economically backward classes. This festers inequality, as it favors the more privileged who are able to afford coaching, in addition to pursuing class XII.” Remarkably, the bill was introduced a day after the death of the 20-year-old student, Dhanush who committed suicide over fear of failing the examination third time in a row. AIADMK staged a walkout during the session in protest of the bill, though the party leader Edapaddi K Palaniswami conveyed his and party’s support towards the ruling DMK government’s decision.

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