Bill aiming to scrap NEET PG and replace MCI with NMC, gets Cabinet approval , but a long way ahead to become a law !!
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New Delhi: The Central Cabinet on Wednesday approved the controversial National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill, 2019 that aims setting up of a National Medical Commission to replace the Medical Council of India (MCI). The Bill aiming to transform the medical education in India, also seeks repealing of the Indian Medical Council Act 1956.
With the Bill, the common final year MBBS exam will be known as National Exit Test (NEXT) and will serve as a licentiate exam for entrance to post graduate medical courses and as a screening test for foreign medical graduates.
The big question which remains unanswered till now !!
1) What will be the layout and format of Final year MBBS exam also called NEXT to be conducted centrally by the government ??
2) Will it be a mcq based exam, a subjective and how much weightage for Practicals will be given ?
3) Who will be the exam conducting authority, will it be NBE , NTA , AIIMS or any other central agency under the Union Government ?
4) From which year this system will be executed and how will the Government accomodate the repeater students already preparing for NEET PG .
5) The inclusion of Institutes of National importance such as AIIMS , JIPMER , PGI Chandigarh, etc. in NEXT will also give rise to a fresh debate wherein the autonomous rights of these institutions will be maintained?
6) Comparing the UG Students studying in India alongwith foreign graduates with the same exam will definitely raise the eyebrows.
The Bill provides that the national entrance test, the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET), common counseling and NEXT will also be applicable to Institutes of National Importance (INIs) such as the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).
“Currently, we are having NEET and entrance exams for AIIMS etc. Now we will also have an exit exam that will be for everyone for getting a license to practice medicine in the country," union minister Prakash Javadekar said during the Cabinet briefing.
The Commission will also regulate fee and all other charges for 50% seats in private medical colleges and deemed universities. The Medical Assessment and Rating Board (MARB) will conduct assessment to the medical college and develop a system of ranking of medical colleges which would enable the students to choose the medical college wisely. “These measures through and autonomous commission will ensure a transparent admission process and also bring down admission fee, as we have long been talking about fee regulation in private colleges," said Javadekar.
The NMC will have four autonomous boards, namely Under-Graduate Medical Education Board, Post-Graduate Medical Education Board, Medical Assessment and Rating Board and Ethics and Medical Registration Board. The NMC and respective boards will ensure a dynamic and modern educational environment, decreasing the emphasis on physical infrastructure, achieving the norms in global standards and an effective grievance redressal mechanism, the government said in an official statement.
The Medical Assessment and Rating Board will grant permission for new medical colleges, starting of PG course and increase of seats based on the standards set by the UG and PG Boards. The annual renewal permission for new medical colleges before recognition is being done away with," the government said in the official statement.
The government has been pushing the NMC Bill amid resistance from the Indian Medical Association (IMA) and other sections. The Bill has however been facing flak over various issues and the apex medical body—IMA—has claimed that replacing MCI with another body may attract new forms of corruption. IMA and it's student wing IMA MSN is keeping a close watch on all the sequence of events and seems to be not much appreciated by the move due to various controversial clauses in the upcoming bill.
For the students community and due to great confusion arising since last couple of days , we would like to brief all that NMC Bill has a long long way again to get passed from both the houses of the Parliament. The draft is only cleared by the Central Cabinet, it will next be introduced in Lok Sabha for debate and passage followed by the same procedure in the Rajya Sabha. Although the ruling Government has good numbers in both the houses to get it passed easily but at the same time the Government could not completely ignore the viewpoint of the students in this regard. The controversial clauses in case of passing of bill from both the houses will definitely be requiring a tough task of judicial scrutiny as there will be high chances of petitions being filed in the Supreme Court . As of now , much cannot be said in this regard until or unless the Bill is introduced for debate in Lok Sabha and then only we can comment completely on the layout of the NMC Bill and NEXT.
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