In a huge setback to the Tamil Nadu government, the Supreme Court has ordered the state to begin medical admissions based on NEET by September 4. This comes after the Centre refused to endorse Tamil Nadu’s draft ordinance seeking a one-year exemption from NEET.
On Monday, Attorney General of India KK Venugopal reversed his opinion on a proposed State Ordinance to facilitate the one-year exemption. After the Centre gave the nod last week, the AG has now conveyed to officials that the ordinance will not stand legal scrutiny, reports TNIE.
Speaking to Puthiya Thalaimurai, senior advocate Nalini Chidambaram, who had represented medical aspirants in Tamil Nadu who had passed NEET, said, "NEET has to be a basis for admission for now. Tamil Nadu government has nothing else to argue if there is no ordinance. There is already a delay in admissions, so till September 4 they have been given time to conduct counselling."
"Any further appeal against NEET can only be done to God," she said.
Last week, the Supreme Court had ordered status quo on medical admissions in the state until August 22. The apex court had then asked the Medical Council of India and the Tamil Nadu government to find a "balanced" solution, so as to help state board students and those who had passed NEET. In the last hearing, the apex court had sought details on the number of students who had cleared the State Board Plus Two exam and managed to qualify for NEET.
On August 13, the Centre had said it was willing to exempt Tamil Nadu from NEET for one year.
Union Minister of State for Commerce, Nirmala Sitharaman had then said, "CM of Tamil Nadu has met PM, Health Minister Nadda, they have met me too multiple times. The government has applied NEET for various boards. If the TN govt adopts the ordinance route and asks for a one year exemption, we are ready to oblige."
Following this, a day later – on August 14, the Tamil Nadu government handed a draft of the ordinance to the Centre to give exemption to students from the NEET examination for admission to government colleges in the state.