Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, MK Stalin criticizes Governor, RN Ravi’s decision to return the anti-NEET bill 2021. He says, a Governor’s job is to just send the bill to the President, just like a postman.
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The Anti-NEET row in Tamil Nadu is increasing day by day. Recently, Tamil Nadu’s Chief Minister MK Stalin slammed the Governor of Tamil Nadu. He said that, Governor RN Ravi never had the authority to accept or reject the bill. He only had to send the bill to the higher authority that is the President.
He also said that the Governor of the state is nothing more than a postman who delivers the orders to higher authorities. Furthermore, Stalin has also refused to seek Governor’s approval for passing the anti-NEET bill.
During an event organized by Dravidar Kazhagam against NEET, MK Stalin heavily criticized RN Ravi’s decision. He said, “I’m not asking for approval of the Governor. He doesn’t have the power to approve. I’m asking him to send the Bill to the President. Just like Professor (Veeramani) said, he is supposed to do the postman job.” He further claimed that a nominated governor is deciding against the choice of 8 crore people. “Can we claim that Democracy is prevailing in this country? It is not apt for his position to refuse to send the draft Bill,” he said.
On the Sunday morning of 19 September, a teenager named Dhanush committed suicide fearing to attempt the NEET examination. The teenager had previously appeared twice for the exam and feared that he might still not succeed in the exam. Many young students commit suicide, fearing the effects of the NEET exam on poor students of Urban and Rural areas.
The Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, MK Stalin expressed utter grief on the death of the youngster. While all the political parties of TN, AIADMK and DMK accused each other for the incident, Stalin targeted the Centre. MK Stalin accused the Central government of turning a blind eye to the incident and many other incidents where young children commit suicide due to the fear of the examinations.
Further, MK Stalin assured to bring in a law that will “permanently exempt” Tamil Nadu students from the hype of NEET examination. He said, “Our legal struggle against NEET starts now after taking over the reins of the government. The state government has the responsibility and duty to build a good future for students and realising this, our struggle will continue till the Union government rescinds NEET.”
Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly passed the bill
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On 13 September, 2021 MK Stalin introduced a bill to exempt TN students from NEET. Instead, students can pursue medical studies on the basis of marks obtained in the Qualifying Examination (Class 12th), through “normalisation methods”.
All the political parties present at the session accepted the bill. However, just the BJP refused to accept the bill and walked out from the house in protest. The ruling party expressed the urgent need of this bill to establish “social justice” in the education sector. Further, the bill had to be presented before the President for it to change into an act.
The CM established a 9-member committee, led by retired Madras High Court judge AK Rajan. The committee prepared a 165-page report mentioning the ill-effects of this examination on children’s mental health. Further, the presence of just one and only NEET examination to pursue medical studies, has impacted vastly on poor children’s contribution towards the sector. The share of seats, once equally distributed among all students including the ones passing from Tamil Nadu Board of Higher Secondary Examinations, is now enjoyed by just CBSE students. The exam in its current form discriminates against poor and Tamil Board pass-out students.
However, the bill was returned to the government after 142 days by the governor for some readjustments in the report. In February, Stalin again introduced this bill with corrections. The bill was passed in the TN assembly and Stalin expected the governor to forward it to the President of India, without any delay. Unfortunately, the bill was again returned by the Governor, RN Ravi.
This has immensely irked Chief Minister MK Stalin. Stalin said that this act raises questions over the Centre-state relations in TN. He also asked the governor if his decision is fair enough that he can send back the decision made by the entire parliament elected by the people of TN. The act of RN Ravi raises questions over the ‘Principles of Democracy’.
Published by – Mohit Maurya
Edited by – Nehal Sharma