The Union Home Ministry has sought clarifications from the Tamil Nadu government on a bill that seeks to give exemption to the southern state’s students from the ambit of National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET), Lok Sabha was informed on Tuesday. The NEET is a common qualifying test for MBBS and BDS courses in medical and dental colleges across India. It is conducted by the National Testing Agency. However, the Tamil Nadu government wants state’s students to be exempted from the examination. The state has suggested that students can be admitted to medical colleges based on their Class 12 scores. Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Kumar Mishra said a bill namely ‘The Tamil Nadu Admission to Undergraduate Medical Degree Courses Bill, 2021’, reserved by the governor of Tamil Nadu, for consideration and assent of the President of India was received in the home ministry on May 2, 2022. He said as per practice, bills reserved by the governors of the states for consideration and assent of the President are processed in the home ministry in consultation with the nodal central ministries and departments. Accordingly, the minister said the consultation process with nodal central ministries and departments concerned with the bill was initiated.
“The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and the Ministry of AYUSH furnished their ‘comments’ on the bill which have been shared with the government of Tamil Nadu on June 21, 2022 and June 27, 2022, respectively for their comments and clarifications,” he said replying to a written question in Lok Sabha.
Mishra said the consultation process in such cases takes time and therefore no fixed time can be prescribed for such approval.
The Tamil Nadu government passed the NEET exemption bill for the second time in February after the governor had returned it last year. The bill was first passed in September 2021 seeking an exemption to the state from the ambit of the NEET.