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Not a NEET idea to consider State board syllabi, say students

Students, parents and teachers from various parts of the country have written to the Union government against its decision to rejig the syllabus for the National Eligibility and Entrance Test (NEET) less than 100 days before the examination.

Published: 20th January 2018 01:45 AM  |   Last Updated: 20th January 2018 08:55 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Students, parents and teachers from various parts of the country have written to the Union government against its decision to rejig the syllabus for the National Eligibility and Entrance Test (NEET) less than 100 days before the examination.

Prakash Javadekar, Union Minister for Human Resource Development, in an interview with The New Indian Express on Wednesday had said that from this year, all State syllabi will be taken into consideration while preparing examination papers for NEET — the test for entrance into MBBS and dental courses.

This, the minister, had said was being done in the wake of protests in some states, since students belonging to State boards feel they were at a disadvantage because the NEET syllabus is based on the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) pattern.

Hundreds of aspiring medical practitioners and their parents/guardians are now saying that the decision to make significant changes in the syllabus is “politically motivated” and has created “panic and confusion” in their minds.

“I suspect that the government has now come up with the idea to appease some student groups and political parties in southern states, particularly Tamil Nadu, which had seen strong anti-NEET protests last year,” Amit Gupta, a teacher in Kota, Rajasthan, who had last year challenged the Centre’s decision to fix an upper age limit for NEET aspirants in the Supreme Court, told this newspaper.

He added, “While curricula in some states is based on the CBSE pattern, syllabi of states like West Bengal, Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra are up to 40 per cent different and if all those different portions were taken into account for NEET papers, most students — even non-CBSE ones — will be in for a major shock.”

The CBSE is likely to organise the NEET-undergraduate exam in the first week of May and a notification is likely by January-end. Last year, about 12 lakh students had taken up the test across India.
A group of parents from Maharashtra on Friday shot off a letter to Javadekar asking him to retract his decision.

“Students have been working hard for the last two years and have been following the NCERT books as per the CBSE syllabus..any changes at this hour will lead to increased stress and chaos among students as students might be required to study new topics..we therefore pray to the government to stick to its stand of one nation, one syllabus, one examination,” a letter signed by about 100 guardians read.

Many others wrote to the HRD ministry and PM Narendra Modi on social media platforms to express their displeasure over the government’s change of stance over NEET syllabus. “Respected PMji, regarding the education minister’s announcement of replacing NEET syllabus with the State syllabi-new rules must be implemented at the beginning of the 11th std (sic). With only 3 months to go, it is too late for the students to study something new all over again,” tweeted Smita Sanghvi, parent of a NEET aspirant.



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