SC to decide J&K’s NEET fate after Delhi’s reply on Monday

SC to decide J&K’s NEET fate after Delhi’s reply on Monday

Srinagar: Will Jammu and Kashmir be allowed to hold its own undergraduate medical and dental entrance exams under state laws or will it be asked to fall in line with National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET)?
The supreme court of India on Friday announced to decide it after hearing Solicitor General of India on Monday.
“The issue with regard to those students, who had appeared or who are due to appear in examinations conducted by the States in accordance with their State laws, shall be decided after hearing the Solicitor General,” a three-member bench headed by justice Anil R. Dave said after allowing the request by the Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar to adjourn the hearing. It ordered listing of the matter at 2 pm. on May 9 (Monday).
The Solicitor General submitted that Indian government health officials are meeting with their counterparts in several States on Saturday to iron out several issues linked to the NEET. The discussions will revolve around exempting the states from NEET and allowing them to conduct separate entrance exams for admissions to state government colleges. Besides J&K, other states like Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Kerala and Assam have made fervent appeals against the NEET.
The Bench, also comprising Justices Shiva Kirti Singh and A.K. Goel, on Thursday observed: “State subject law will be respected and only permanent residents of the State shall be eligible for admission to Medical Colleges in Jammu and Kashmir”.
Further, the bench said, the reservations shall be as per the State Reservation Act and Women would continue to get 50% reservation as provided under the State Act besides reservation for other reserved categories.
The bench’s observations had followed submissions by former Attorney General of India Gopal Subramanium, representing the J&K. Subramanium referred to Article 370 of the constitution of India which grants special status to state and submitted that as far as the J&K was concerned, 42nd amendment was not extended to the state as such “education” still falls under the state list for J&K and the state has exclusive power to regulate the education.
State Common Entrance Test (CET) is being conducted by J&K Board of Professional Entrance Examination (JKBOPEE) on May 14 and 15.
Meanwhile, the bench categorically clarified that private colleges, deemed universities and associations will not be allowed to hold their own undergraduate medical and dental entrance exams and will have to strictly comply with NEET 2016-17.
The apex court had on April 29 ordered that entrance test for admission to MBBS and BDS courses for the academic year 2016-17 will be held as per the schedule through the two-phased NEET.
“Those students who had appeared at NEET Phase-I (on May 1) shall not be permitted to appear at NEET Phase-II (scheduled on July 24) but the students who could not appear at NEET Phase-I may appear at NEET Phase-II,” the bench said to while concluding the half-hour hearing.

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