From our special correspondent
Daijiworld Media Network
Bangalore, March 2: Amid the death of boy Haveri Naveen pursuing medical studies in war-torn Ukraine in the bombings of former Chief Minister and State President Janata Dal (S) HD Kumaraswamy and the KPCC Chairman DK Shivakumar have strongly condemned the Centre’s ‘misguided’ National Eligibility and Entrance Test (NEET) for admission to MBBS courses in the country, forcing hundreds of students from poor and middle class families to go to countries like Ukraine to study medicine.
“The NEET system has shattered the dreams of providing medical education to students from poor and middle class families,” Kumaraswamy said, strongly objecting to the Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister’s “callous” comment, Prahlad Joshi, that 90% of Indian students obtain medical degrees abroad. does not pass the necessary eligibility tests in the country and that he (Joshi) does not want to discuss the cost of medical education in India.
The KPCC chief, who addressed media representatives en route to the party’s Mekedatu padayatra, condemned the Union Minister’s statement that students who got lower grades go to study abroad and the fact that the country’s prime minister endorses such comments is “shameful”. and demanded Prahlad Joshi’s apology from the student community.
“The Union Minister’s statement is derogatory and an insult to students’ self-respect. A student from the state lost his life due to a bomb attack during the war in Ukraine and the minister says that students who do not get good grades go abroad,” said Shivakumar. ‘Most parents cannot afford to spend Rs 30 lakh, Rs 1 crore or Rs 2 crore on their children’s medical education and hence send them abroad to study cheaply. Similarly, students who cannot afford to study in London or the United States come to India and even to Karnataka. There are people who come to Bengaluru for heart surgeries at Jayadeva and other hospitals. Can we speak ill of these people,” he asked.
Kumaraswamy questioned the Union Minister’s statement that he does not want to discuss the cost of medical education in India or compare costs in other countries as now was not the time to do so . Obviously, the Union Minister supports and justifies the high cost of medical education in India and ignores the harsh reality that the NEET system has destroyed the dreams of a large number of students from poor families and the middle class to undergo medical training.
The NEET system spawned the tuition and coaching mafia, he said, and accused the Center of abetting it. “The NEET system of admission to medical courses is a death knell for students and parents because it ensures that only the rich and well-off can afford higher education, denying the same to the poor and middle classes, especially those who come from rural areas,” says Kumaraswamy.
Head of State JD(S) says Naveen’s death in a bombing in Ukraine, where he had traveled for medical training, shows the ”ugly face of the system NEET”. Academically brilliant but financially weak, rural students are deprived of medical training due to the NEET system.
“Naveen got 97% marks in Second PUC but was denied medical seat in India. It is difficult for a student from rural areas to achieve a high percentage of grades and even those who do are deprived of medical training,’ he said and alleged that the NEET system had led to the proliferation of drug shops. tuition doing business in crores by charging lakhs in fees and only those who get coaching from these tuition shops get 99% grades and places under NEET.
The former chief minister said that the Center and the state government are shouting at each other about national education policy and that ‘Vishwa Guru’ is silent on the commercialization of medical education and they are responsible for the deaths of students like Naveen.
The KPCC leader said Union Minister Joshi should bear in mind that India’s talented youth are occupying key positions in Europe, America, Australia and many other countries and occupying positions of leadership in more than 500 global companies.
“Ours is a global city and destination. There is nothing wrong with Indian students going to study abroad. Karnataka alone has 63 medical colleges and many foreign students study in the state,’ he said, pointing out that a few years ago, students from northern India were coming to the state. state because their home states lacked engineering or medical colleges.
Shivakumar said students like Naveen go to foreign countries for medical training with the dream of getting a higher education and becoming good citizens. “Naveen got excellent grades at SSLC and PUC. Since he didn’t get a medical seat here, he went to Ukraine to study cheaply. Not everyone has the same financial capacity. But the children of farmers, those who sell vegetables or other menial jobs also want to give a good education to their children. It is wrong and condemnable that such students are insulted as poor in their studies, who could not get places in India,” he said and warned that the younger generation and students might revolt if the government does not not fix the situation.
The KPCC leader promised to visit Naveen’s parents and console them after the padayatra with local Congress leaders. “I spoke to Naveen’s brother and he said they were trying to pressure the Indian Embassy in Ukraine to bring Naveen’s body home. He was magnanimous in not mentioning the Center. But we will urge the state and central government to do everything possible to at least bring the body home,” he said.
Shivakumar criticized the state government for its zeal and haste in implementing the National Education Policy, which is nothing but the Nagpur Education Policy of the RSS. “They talk about giving a separate degree if a student fails in one year in the 4-year course. It devalues degrees and eventually forces them to sell pakoras,’ he said and the Congress party will withdraw the NEP because even BJP-led states like Madhya Pradesh, Gujrat and Uttar Pradesh l have yet implemented.
Ashwath defends NEET
Meanwhile, Minister of Higher Education Dr. CN Ashwath Narayan has strongly defended the NEET system and described it as the best effort to correct the anomalies in the medical education admissions process. “It (NEET) even helps children from poor families to become doctors. Those who oppose it are crazy about money and enemies,” he said.
While sympathizing with Naveen’s family and assuring that the state government would give all assistance to the family in times of grief, he said the tragedy should not be exploited to attack the caste system and the reservation. . The government is very concerned about the poor and socially and economically backward strata, he said.
Of the 20,000 Indians in Ukraine, the Center has already brought back 2,000 people and the rest will be soon. The Center is already in contact with Ukraine, Russia, Poland, Romania and other countries to help Indians stranded in Ukraine, the minister added.