Stalin questions state moving SC on the issue in January, Vijaya Baskar clarifies.
“There were media reports that the state government has approached the Supreme Court praying for scrapping NEET on January 4. The state after several hesitations has approached the apex court when the last date for applying to NEET exam was January 6. State should explain the impact created by the case on NEET issue,” questioned Leader of Opposition MK Stalin.
In his reply, Health Minister C Vijaya Baskar said that the ruling AIADMK is committed against NEET, but it was the DMK and Congress which introduced NEET in the country. “When Congress was in power at the Centre, NEET was implemented on December 27, 2010 and DMK which was an ally of Congress supported it. The seed for NEET was sown by DMK and Congress and we are trying to weed it out,” he added.
Immediately responding to the allegations of the Minister, Stalin stated that it was DMK which obtained stay against NEET on July 18, 2013. “Though DMK was in alliance with Congress we were the ones to obtain ban on NEET,” said Stalin.
For that, Vijaya Baskar once again responded by saying that Congress government had immediately filed a review petition against the order and based on the petition, the Supreme Court in 2016 withdrew the previous judgment and order to conduct NEET once again.
The Minister also said that the case is still pending in Supreme Court and after the hearing in December, last year, the advocates opined that state can file a case against NEET citing section 10 D of Indian Medical Council Act. Based on that legal advice, a fresh petition was filed in Supreme Court.
“The fresh petition has nothing to do with the last date for application of NEET and the state government is committed against NEET. The late chief minister J Jayalalithaa was the first state leader to remove the entrance examination in the state and the present government headed by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami, who is following on the footsteps of Jayalalithaa, is committed to scrap NEET,” said Vijaya Baskar.
Stalin then replied that state government has wasted lot of time over NEET issue as the resolution against NEET was passed unanimously in the Assembly, but the state had approached the court only after the date for submitting NEET applications has ended. To that Vijaya Baskar replied that it was DMK that supported NEET initially and wasted time.
In an unusual gesture, while speaking on the issue, Deputy Opposition Leader Duraimurugan praised Jayalalithaa and said that till the time she was alive NEET did not enter Tamil Nadu, but after her death the present government had allowed NEET. “Jayalalithaa was stubborn against NEET and I appreciate her for not allowing NEET, but after her death NEET was implemented by the present government.”
Vijaya Baskar then explained, “When Jayalalithaa sought ban on NEET, it was not an Act and so the state was able to get exemption for one year, but after her demise an Act for NEET was passed and it became mandatory. It was DMK that allowed NEET across the country and AIADMK is now fighting against it.”