The Tamil Nadu government has moved the Supreme Court challenging the validity of the National Eligibility cum Entrance Examination (NEET) for admissions in medical courses in colleges across the nation, alleging that the single window common test is violative of the principle of federalism.
The NEET is a pre-medical entrance test for admissions in undergraduate medical courses such as MBBS and BDS and also for post-graduate courses in government and private medical colleges.
In a lawsuit, filed under Article 131 of the Constitution, the state government has alleged that the principle of federalism, which is part of the basic structure of the Constitution, is being violated by examinations like NEET as it takes away the autonomy of states to make decisions regarding education.
The plea, filed through lawyer Amit Anand Tiwari, said the validity of NEET was upheld in 2020 by the apex court on grounds that it was required to curb the evil of unfair practises such as granting admission based on paying capacity of candidates, charging capitation fee, large-scale malpractices, exploitation of students, profiteering, and commercialisation.
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However, such grounds are not applicable in the case of admissions to government seats and the reasoning of the judgment is applicable only to private college seats, it said, adding the verdict upholding the NEET does not bind a state in so far as admissions to government seats are concerned.
The suit seeks a decree “declaring that Sections 14 of the National Medical Commission Act, 2019, the National Commission for Indian System of Medicine Act, 2020 and the National Commission of Homeopathy Act, 2020, Regulations 9 and 9A of the Post-Graduate Medical Education Regulations, 2000, Regulations I(2), I(5) and II of the BDS Course Regulations, 2007 respectively are violative of Article 14 of the Constitution, violate federalism and therefore void”.