Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami, on Monday, inaugurated a project to help higher secondary school students prepare for competitive exams, including NEET.
Through this project, the State, which was so far protesting against the central exam, will open 412 training centers (one for each panchayat union) for government school students. Twenty five of these centers have already started functioning in Gobichettipalayam, Namakkal, Edappadi and Uthangarai.
However some see the Government’s decision as a ploy to keep people quiet. Earlier this year violent protests erupted across the state with the protesters claiming that NEET would help only students who studied under the CBSE syllabus.
“These coaching centres are a temporary measure to calm the people. The State government has a lot of issues with the Centre right now including the IT raids… certain people are being targeted. Student communities all over are protesting BJP’s authoritarian policies,” says Illayaraja Shan, leader of Tamil Nadu Maanavar Munnani.
“In October, 50 students committed suicide in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. There is a war-like situation brewing all over India…” says Shan.
On 1 September, S Anitha, a State Board student who had secured a score of 1176 on 1200 in her 12th standard State Board exams but 86 on 720 in NEET-UG 2017, took her life, sparking State-wide protests against NEET. The scale of the protests led the Supreme Court of India to order the Tamil Nadu government to control it.
Dinesh, the manager of the Thiruvanmiyur branch of coaching centre Apollo Academy, wanted the government to be clearer about its stance on NEET. “Anitha was given false hope by the State. She believed that she would get a seat…people were confident that NEET would be cancelled so no preparation was done. Hence that one year exemption we got was not enough,” he said.
“Anitha was given false hope by the State…” said Dinesh, manager at Apollo Academy, referring to the State Board student who committed suicide because she could not pass NEET and get a MBBS seat
My entire 17years of education didn't cost even Rs.50K😐 but #NEET coaching alone costs ₹3.26Lakhs. Entrance exams are a class discriminators and a reason why it should be eliminated in entry level graduation/professional courses. #EducationForCash https://t.co/mOxa8gtSxe
— 🅽🅸🅲🅷🅴 | சதுக்க பூதம் ⟁ (@NicheBrain) November 8, 2017