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Op-Ed

Quo Vadis Technical Education Department

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By EMN Updated: Sep 21, 2014 11:40 pm
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Imthy Imchen, Kohima

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he sordid saga of the innocent and hapless students in hands of the Technical Education Department, Nagaland seems to have no ending. The drama started from the Notification of the Department dated 11th December, 2013 which stated, “During 2014 there shall be no State JEE. Selection of students for State reserved seats in Under Graduate Engineering and MBBS and allied courses will be on the basis of JEE ( main ) and All India Pre Medical Test ( AIPMT) respectively to be conducted by Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE). It is felt that by sitting for one examination students will be benefited by becoming eligible for admission to national level institutes such as IITS, NITS, IIITS, etc. as well as State reserved seats and not having to appear multiple examinations”. Surprisingly, this very important Notification was not even endorsed to State Common Selection Board Members unlike the much touted “Meeting Minutes of 10th December, 2010 “ which was purportedly sent to all Department HOD’s, Government of Nagaland “for strict compliance”. Thereafter, the Department issued Guidelines for Selection to Nagaland State Quota Seats in Medical and Allied Courses AIPMT 2014. The instruction in General Information (viii) reads “Applicants MUST NOT indicate preferences in those branches of studies for which they are not interested. Once preferences are indicated by the applicants and if selected against any of the preferences, the candidates must accept the nominations. If not, the candidate will be debarred from sitting in the AIPMT from the following year
This step has been necessitated to discourage the uninterested students from spoiling the chances of other candidates who may like to pursue other branches of study”.On the 4th May, 2014 students from Nagaland took the AIPMT along with the rest of the country.
Through a letter NO./TECH-A/6/2011. Dated nil July 2014, the Director of Technical Education on the recommendation of the Common Selection Board issued provisional selection of students for undergoing studies in various MBBS and allied degrees through AIPMT. A list of 46 students for MBBS, 10 for BDS, 11 BVSc., 30 BSc Agri, 10 BSc Nursing , 3 BSc Horti, 1 BAMS, 1 BSc Fishery, 5 B. Pharm, 2 BHMS, 3 BSc MLT and 1 Home Science were shown as selected. A footnote which said “As per AIPMT results declared by CBSE, only one candidate has secured the minimum eligible percentage of 40 % as stipulated by the MCI for admission to MBBS course. The State Government is actively pursuing the matter with the GOI for relaxing the qualifying percentage, so that all candidates selected for MBBS course may be given admission. However, till such time the GOI agrees to our request, selection of MBBS candidates remains purely provisional”. To the utter shock and dismay of many proud and happy students, there came out another Order from the Technical Education Director on the 23rd July, 2014, calling the attention of All AIPMT 2014 appeared candidates from Nagaland, and to inform “ since none of the bona fide candidates who had appeared in AIPMT 2014 could secure the minimum qualifying marks of 40% as required by the Medical Council of India for admission to MBBS & BDS courses, the Government of Nagaland has decided to conduct Nagaland State Pre Medical Test (NSPMT) on the 9th August, 2014”. Amongst 5 conditions, ii) says AIPMT 2014 candidates who have already accepted and taken their nomination letters for any other allied courses like BSc Agri, BVSc, BSc Horti etc. will not be eligible to take the NSPMT 2014. Condition iv) also said candidates securing less than 40% marks in the NSPMT will not be eligible for nomination to MBBS/BDS seats. This letter clearly is in total contravention to the Notification dated 11th December, 2014 by the Commissioner & Secretary of the Technical Education Department which said that students will not sit in multiple exams. This letter of the Director also seems to have made null and void the provisional selection of the Common Selection Board of dated nil July, 2014 where in the footnote clear mention of the State Government’s active pursuance to the GOI for relaxing the qualifying percentage so that all candidates selected for MBBS course may be given admission is stated. What was the reply of the GOI to the request of the government is not known to public, but what is known is that the inconsistent and heartless acts of the Department bordering on Muhammad Bin Tuglaq’s endless shifting of his capital which brought about his inevitable end seems to be eminent. It is now in public knowledge that NSPMT did not bring the desired results. None could attain 40% as required by Medical Council of India. But the Technical Education Department has come out with its list of students for MBBS &BDS purportedly based on 60% AIPMT & 40% NSPMT. What utter nonsense!!! When the Department through its 11th December, 2013 Notification has already stated that students will not appear for multiple exams which include allied courses also, where is the Notification superseding the latest government Order? If there is no Corrigendum to that effect, with what authority the Department decided to conduct the NSPMT? More serious question is with what Government executive order the rest of the students who were selected for other allied courses barred from appearing for NSPMT? How the Government Notification did dated 11th December, 2013 bifurcated into two separate entities? i.e. one criteria for MBBS/BDS and the other for Allied courses, when all the students fulfilling uniform eligibility criteria appeared AIPMT on 4th May, 2014, under the same norms and conditions? The most foulest act of the Department of Technical Education was allowing selected students who had “already accepted and taken their nomination letters for any other allied courses” were made to take the NSPMT 2014, most notably, serial no.185 roll no. 41199, who had already accepted and taken nomination letter for BSc. Horticulture in Dr. Y.S. Parmar University of Forestry & Horticulture, Solan, and whom the whole State had stood for, for “justice and fairness” was allowed to sit in the exam. Was the same justice and fairness extended to hundreds of deserving Naga students whose aspiration to become Medical professionals were cruelly shut out by one stroke of a defective and biased Government order? The Government of Nagaland should wake up from its deep slumber and conduct an Enquiry at an early date so that its citizens will have faith in the Government. No one no matter how powerful is above the law. The future of our next generation cannot and must not be gambled away so cheaply and criminally. Meanwhile, it is demanded that the so called selection list brought out furtively by the Technical Education Department should be put on hold. People will no longer tolerate the undemocratic, biased and clandestine activities of the Technical Education Department. !!! We demand and deserve an answer and fast!!!.

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By EMN Updated: Sep 21, 2014 11:40:50 pm