Medical Admissions 2020-21

Medical Admissions 2020-21

NEET 2018 online application delayed! Is this the reason?

PUBLISH DATE 6th February 2018

NEET 2018 Notification: Could delay be linked to MCI notification on upper age limit, open school eligibility?

 

A week of February 2018 has already elapsed and Central Board of Secondary Education, CBSE is yet to release the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test, NEET 2018 notification. With board examinations a few weeks away, lakhs of aspirants are currently waiting for the release of the NEET 2018 online application forms. However, there is no update or confirmation from CBSE regarding the date for the release. In the interim, an official gazette from MCI dated January 22, 2018, which bars open school students and candidates over 25 years from appearing in NEET has already started raising concerns ahead of the notification. Could these amendments be the reason for the delay?

The amendments in the “Regulations on Graduate Medical Education, 1997”, the MCI clearly specifies that the students who have appeared or are appearing as a private candidate or through open schools for their class 12 examination are barred from NEET. The amendments further put an upper age limit of 25 years for general category students and 30 years for reserved category students. The upper age limit would be applicable as on the date of the examination. As per the existing rules, the minimum age limit for NEET is set at 17 years as on or before 31 December for the year of admission to the medical college. The amendments add that the upper age limit of 25 years and 30 years for general and reserved category students, respectively, has to be attained by the candidate appearing for the NEET exam, calculated on the date of the examination.

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Explaining the same for NEET 2018, the upper age limit for NEET 2018 would be hence calculated as 25 years as on May 6, 2018 (provided the examination is conducted on May 6). Further additional clearly specifies “two years of regular and continuous study of Physics, Chemistry, Biology/Biotechnology taken together shall be required at 10+2 level for all the candidates. Candidates who have passed 10+2 from Open Schools or as Private candidates shall not be eligible to appear for National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test. Furthermore, the study of Biology/Biotechnology as an Additional Subject at 10+2 level also shall not permissible.” Related News | NEET 2018 News update: NIOS, Open School students eligible to apply for exam, MCI asked to reverse order

Following the earlier release of MCI decision, the National Institute of Open Schooling, NIOS had written to the Ministry of Human Resource Development which in turn had advised the Ministry of Health against the implementation of the rule. The reports released earlier suggested that the MCI has been instructed to reverse the order. However, there is no official confirmation as yet from the MCI.

As the gazette notification predates the NIOS news, it can be conjectured that the delay in the release of the notification could be the contention over the age limit. New Indian Express has also shared the news of a group of students planning to move the apex court against the MCI decision on the age limit. Whether or not the amendments to the MCI rules be implemented this year is yet to be decided. However, in case the matter persists and if the reason is the amendments suggested, the delay in NEET 2018 online application forms may extend further.

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