Published: 28th July 2019
Why the National Exit Examination is going to be the 'next' NEET for marginalised students
Medicos have strongly opposed the new move, calling it unnecessary and unfair to the students
Even as the agitations against NEET continue, the Union government has now decided to convert the final year examination of the MBBS course into a licentiate examination that will also determine PG selection. Instead of having a separate entrance exam for PG, the final exams will determine whether or not the student will be eligible for a PG seat, this exam will also be applicable to foreign degree students.
Medicos have strongly opposed the new move, calling it unnecessary and unfair to the students. We spoke to Dr Ravindranath GR, general secretary, Doctors' Association For Social Equality who is firmly against this new proposal and states the following reasons for his stand.
Qualification Exam does not equal Competitive Exam
Ravindranath says the final exam is only to determine if the student is good enough to receive an MBBS degree, it cannot become an exam that will decide if they get a PG seat or not. "The objective of both the exams is completely different, how can they use the same test to determine two completely different qualifications. It's only after you get your MBBS degree, can you attempt to qualify for a PG course," he explained.
Scoring will be subjective — SC, ST students will suffer
Since professors would have known the students for so many years, it is not possible for them to be completely objective in their marking and could let their biases get in the way. "Students who are facing discrimination especially marginalised students will suffer because they could lose out on a PG seat because of a professors prejudices," he explained.
For the regular final year exam, students will have to attend oral exams, clinical exams, OP, surgical exam and various other tests, "Who will mark these tests. If the professor doesn't like a student, they can easily fail them and because of this, a student will lose the opportunity to get a PG seat too. There is a chance of gender discrimination too," he added.
"PG will be filled only with the elite. Professor will also be partial to students and give them more marks," Ravendranath added.
Dr Ravindranath GR
Give rise to corruption
The doctor/activist says that converting the final exam into a competitive exam would mean there is more chance of the process being corrupted. "A competitive exam is held independently and devoid of any interferences. Now it will give rise to scandal and unnecessary controversy," he points out.
All power to NTA?
Ravindranath calls this an attempt to corporatise our exams and education. "We have to protest these companies. The NTA seems to be handling all the exams everywhere. Institutes like AIIMS conduct their own entrances, now they won't have a say," he states.
Unfair to students with foreign degrees
"Students who get foreign degrees and want to do their PG here will now suffer because there is no separate competitive exam. There is no separate screening test for them," the activist doctor added. He says that the students will find it difficult to pass such an exam and it will lead to confusion as to what they need to do or what they need to study.
No clarity on details of why, what, how?
Ravindranath has said that the Union government has still not clarified some very basic details about the changes. "There is no clarity on who will conduct, how they will be marked, if it is MCQ's which is again a bad decision because how can you determine someone deserves an MBBS degree solely based on MCQ's. And if there are regular questions, then who will score them?" he questions.
Why change a system that is already functioning perfectly well?
This whole change is completely unnecessary, Ravindranath said. "The current system is working perfectly fine, I don't understand the need for the government to make everything uniform. They are doing the same with NEET. Now, this it causes nothing but unnecessary stress, confusion and negatively impacts the students," he added.
Ravindranath blames the RSS-influenced BJP government for these changes, "The Union government is refusing to accept the fact that we are a diverse country and that their idea of 'one India' where everything is standard for everyone is a violation of the constitution of India. This idea of one exam for everyone is ruining student lives."