Suicides related to the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) and the controversy around medical seats in Tamil Nadu being put outside the purview of NEET for admission to undergraduate medical courses are unfortunate and raise serious concerns. Tamil Nadu has opposed the NEET since it was made compulsory in 2017. The test was alleged to be inimical to the interests of its state board students since it is conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE). In 2021, the state’s government appointed a committee under the chairmanship of a retired high court judge, Justice A.K. Rajan, to study the impact of NEET on medical admissions in Tamil Nadu. The 165-page report (bit.ly/47qNIYm) invoked “social justice” and “protection of vulnerable student communities from discrimination” in medical college admissions and cited “social accountability and professional ethics” as part of the Hippocratic Oath of physicians. It linked medical education to social accountability and called for more diversity in the medical student base.
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