NEET medical entrance test for all colleges from this year

April 28, 2016

NEW DELHI: The common, single National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) for admission to all private and Government medical colleges in the country will be held in two phases, on May 1 and July 4, for the academic year 2016-'17. The Centre, CBSE and the MCI on Thursday presented the schedule in the Supreme Court as directed by the court on Wednesday. The Government was keen to begin the scheme from this year itself and hence the urgency.

The apex court directed the Centre and the CBSE to go ahead and conduct a two- phase single common NEET entrance test for the MBBS and BDS. The apex court said the AIPMT, which is to take place on May 1, will be considered as first phase of the NEET. The second phase would be conducted on July 24, the apex court said.

There are two phases this year because the CBSE had already made arrangements for their usual 15% seats annual test on May 1 which they do not want to cancel. Therefore, the rest of students can sit in a later session scheduled for them on July 24. Both results will be combined and ranked and the results will be out by August end. As per the prevailing orders, the admissions can continue even up to September 30 of a year.

The bench headed by the then Chief Justice of India Altamas Kabir had in 2013 set aside the new NEET plan and allowed private medical colleges and State Government colleges to hold their own entrance tests as earlier. Now, recently, on a fresh petition to revive the single test proposal, a new bench cancelled the 2013 decision against the common test, paving the way for a single test throughout the country. And in the last few days, the Government was engaged in the process of starting the new scheme from the current year itself for which the Government was keen and prepared.

"The Supreme Court very categorically paved the way for NEET examination to take place. NEET itself has been a major move of the Government to put into place a uniform medical examination system which puts everybody at the same level and informs uniformity and informs that all the corruption from the system is removed," advocate Pinky Anand told ANI.

"The Government was still debating on how to put into NEET and in what phases...The Supreme Court had ultimately asked for a schedule. The Government, the CBSE and the MCI sat together in a joint meeting and decided how this could be done and we had placed before the court the schedule that was possible, and particularly the fact that there was requirement of two phases of NEET," she added.

The Supreme Court had on Wednesday said that multiple tests must give way to the single, national NEET from the current 2016-17 session itself. The Government had agreed to prepare the schedule for the year and present it in the court on Thursday itself.

There over 400 medical colleges in the coutry. Lakhs of students appear in hundreds of medical entrance examinations conducted by private medical colleges and the Central and State Governments. Over 50,000 seats are available for the MBBS course.

The present petition was filed by the Sankalp Charitable Trust for a direction to hold a single National Eligibility-Cum-Entrance Test (NEET) for academic year 2016-17 for admission to MBBS, BDS and other courses. In fact they wanted the apex court to stay the usual exam to be held for 15% seats by the CBSE on May 1.

The case was heard and an agreement was reached on Wednesday and the schedule of exam for the current year in view of the already fixed date of May 1, was to be decided on Thursday. The court had directed to place the fresh schedule for holding of common entrance exam before the court on Thursday.

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