The Tamil Nadu government unanimously decided to pass a bill that allows a 7.5 percent horizontal reservation for government school students in medical colleges in the state. The admission will be granted on a preferential basis to students who have cleared the NEET 2020 exam.
As per the state government, this bill will benefit over 300 poor students every year and will be implemented this year itself. Piloting the Bill, Chief Minister K Palaniswami said the AIADMK Government took a policy decision to implement this horizontal reservation based on the recommendation of a commission headed by retired High Court Judge P Kalaiyarasan.
"The Cabinet gave its approval at the meetings held on June 15 and July 14, respectively and accordingly the Bill has been brought," Palaniswmi said, adding, the move would help many rural and poor students realize their dreams of becoming a doctor.
The minister further added that the reservation would be available for undergraduate programmes in medicine, dentistry, Indian medicine and homeopathy but it would not apply to seats reserved for all India quota.
Govt schools students to benefit from bill
According to a provision stated in the bill, Students who studied in government schools shall also be entitled to compete for the government seats, other than those set apart on a preferential basis, along with those who studied in private schools.
As per this new bill, students who have been studying in government schools from class 6 and have qualified the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) will be able to seek admissions to medical colleges.
The report presented by the Tamil Nadu government stated that the students from government schools were placed at a disadvantage as compared to private school students for various reasons.
These include the "cognitive gap created by socio-economic factors such as caste, wealth, parental occupation, parental education and gender and these psychological and socio-economic barriers cannot be bridged by a few months of intensive coaching for NEET, even if provided for free," it said.