May 4, 2018
Image credit : Illusrtative image
Chennai : Even as the political class is busy playing politics with the issue of NEET, help is pouring in for Tamil Nadu students allotted NEET examination centres in Rajasthan from the Tamil associations located there.
The Rajasthan Tamil Sangam in Jaipur has extended all possible help to the students giving NEET examination, ranging from transport, food, accommodation to them. Similarly, other associations with Tamilian connection in the state were also gearing up to provide all help to the students take the NEET examination.
Across the political spectrum, there is widespread condemnation of the move of the authorities to force TN students to appear for NEET entrance test outside the state widely described as a step calculated to harass the student community of the state as also the state government that were against the NEET examination itself.
As long as J Jayalalithaa remained the chief minister, the centre relented and exempted students of TN and TN medical institutions to admit students without NEET examination scores. But within a year of her passing away in December 2016, the centre made NEET compulsory for all medical admissions, forcing the students of TN too to fall in line if they wanted to join medical education system.
Tamil Nadu political parties condemned the move to allot NEET examination centres outside TN to its students. Some 1500 students have been allotted examination centres in Kerala, Karnataka and Rajasthan. As a result many students are busy booking train and bus tickets for the exams adding to the summer rush.
Last year 82,000 candidates appeared for NEET from Tamil Nadu. This year the number has increased by over 30 per cent and even after accommodating 1,10,000 students some 1500 students could not be accommodated, NEET officials said adding that they could not set up more examination centres. The NEET also got a boost after Supreme Court stayed a Madras High Court order directing NEET to set up more examination centres in TN itself.
NEET entrance examination will be held on May 6.
N Ramanathan, a retired government official in Chennai wondered if there was a plot to harass Tamil Nadu by the central government in every way possible, whether it was central government allocations favouring North India or now the NEET examination centres for TN students.
Politicians of all hues waded into the controversy and wanted the TN government to take up the issue strongly with the centre. For the present, DMK working president MK Stalin asked the TN government to arrange flight tickets to the students who are taking the exams as many are finding it difficult to make travel arrangements at the proverbial eleventh hour.
Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam (AMMK) led by T.T.V.Dinakaran announced that it will help TN students with lodging facilities to those who have been allotted entrance exam centres in Kerala.
In a statement issued here Dinakaran said the actions of Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) in relation to National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) is a reflection of Central government’s anti-Tamil Nadu’s attitude.
Dinakaran said several hundreds of medical college aspirants from Tamil Nadu have been allotted exam centres in states like Kerala and Rajasthan.
Angry citizens from Tamil Nadu are sure it was a move to discriminate and harass students from Tamil Nadu. Saravanan Annadurai tweeted that “I have no doubt whatsoever that the #NEET exam centers for TN students has been deliberately changed to avenge #TNAgainstNEET. Nobody will file an appeal to the SC when it’s already settled in HC. No other state’s students are going out of state except #TN. Our Time will Come!”
Tweeting about the issue, actor Kamal Haasan said, “In this digital, internet age, asking students from Tamil Nadu to go to Rajasthan and Kerala to write NEET is injustice. Why can’t they write from here?”, he questioned.