Vagisha Kaushik|Nov 26, 2023
'Absolutely shocking': Congress slams government for reducing NEET PG qualifying percentile to zero
Till now, candidates scoring above 50 percentile were eligible to participate in the counselling process for medical PG admission through NEET.
NEW DELHI: The Congress on Sunday termed "shocking" the government reducing the qualifying percentile for NEET PG 2023 to zero and asked who benefits from completely doing away with the minimum basic standards. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) on Wednesday reduced to zero the qualifying percentile for NEET PG 2023 to be eligible for counselling across all categories.
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In a post on X, Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh said the decision of the Modi government to reduce the cutoff for entry for MD/MS degrees via PG-NEET to the zeroth percentile — making those who score the least in the exam eligible — is "absolutely shocking".
This is a complete U-turn from the stand taken by the government in the Delhi High Court last July, he said and posted a screenshot of a media report on the government telling the HC last year that it cannot lower NEET-PG cut-off so as to the minimum standard of education is maintained. "While most agree that access to medical education and supply of doctors needs to be dramatically increased to meet the demands, whom does it benefit to completely do away with minimum basic standards? Where are the merit-wallahs in the government and among its drum-beaters today?" Ramesh said. "Will this not benefit only private medical colleges who want to sell the seats that are not being filled up to the highest bidder," he asked. "Is this U-turn also being done to benefit children of very influential BJP leaders who would not have qualified without this scandalous dilution?" Ramesh said.
The decision of the Modi government to reduce the cutoff for entry for MD/MS degrees via PG-NEET to the Zeroth Percentile — making those who score the least in the exam eligible — is absolutely shocking! This is a complete U-turn from the stand taken by the govt in the Delhi High… pic.twitter.com/1uN62ECLt5— Jairam Ramesh (@Jairam_Ramesh) September 24, 2023
Union Health Ministry officials on Friday said reducing the qualifying percentile for NEET PG 2023 to zero will increase the pool of qualifying candidates but not dilute the merit system for admission to PG medical courses. Only those scoring the highest marks will get admission for PG medical courses, they said. The admission will be done through a transparent counselling process and will do away with alleged backdoor entry that was offered by some private colleges, the officials said.
They dismissed as imaginary the speculation that students with zero percentile can also become specialist doctors. The reality is that students with the highest marks will be eligible for admission to their choice of courses and colleges, they said. There are 68,142 PG medical seats in the country. Till now, candidates scoring above 50 percentile were eligible to participate in the counselling process for medical PG admission through NEET. Last year, the qualifying criteria was kept at 20 percentile even then 3,000 seats remained vacant under the all India quota, the officials had said.
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