The national common entrance test (CET) slated by the Medical Council of India [ Images ] (MCI) on May 13, 2012, for admissions to the MBBS courses across all government and private medical colleges across the country is off, at least for this year, because of the Supreme Court deferring a hearing against it to January.
Once again, students aspiring to study medicine will have to run from one city to another to appear in the multiple entrance tests. Though the MCI officials said it may not be so in 2013, it is still hope against hope as a score of state governments and private medical colleges do not want to give up their control over admissions.
The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), which was entrusted with holding the CET, on Tuesday announced that it will hold its own All-India Pre-Medical Test (PMT) on that date, while the states will be holding their own PMTs. The CBSE's preliminary exam will be on April 1. The eligibility conditions and syllabus will remain the same as in 2011.
CBSE chairman Vineet Joshi said, "There will be no national CET in 2012. The CBSE will hold its own AIPMT and the states will hold their own entrance tests in 2012."
"The Supreme Court is yet to give the final decision on deferring the test. It will hear the matter in January first week," MCI secretary Sangeeta Sharma explained.
The CBSE announcement came within a week of the health ministry filing an affidavit in the Supreme Court seeking permission to hold the common exam from 2013, instead of 2012 as earlier allowed by the court. A number of state governments and private medical colleges are opposing a single national entrance test.
The MCI had announced the national test on November 17, only after the health ministry asked it to draw up the syllabus for the common test that the CBSE was to hold in English and Hindi. Gujarat, Maharashtra [ Images ], Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal [ Images ] were among states that wanted the test also in the regional languages.
At present, the CBSE conducts its pre-medical test to admit students to the 15 per cent seats under the all-India quota at government medical colleges in the states. For the remaining 85 per cent seats, the state-level tests are held.