The Manipur state government has faced severe criticism for its failure to release the NEET-UG merit list on time, causing significant disruptions in the admission process for MBBS courses in the state.
Challenges in Publishing the Merit List:
The Manipur Directorate of health services had set July 7 as the deadline for announcing the merit list of NEET UG-2023 qualified students for admission to the four medical colleges in Manipur. However, due to the prevailing law and order situation and a two-month-long internet ban in the region, the district health department officials from Jiribam were unable to submit physical applications on time.
This setback was further compounded by the non-availability of helicopter services, making it impossible to airlift the application forms from Jiribam, the southernmost district bordering the Barak Valley in Assam.
Offline Submission Option and Admissions Process:
To mitigate the impact of the internet ban, the health department allowed offline submission of applications at the directorate in Imphal and the offices of the chief medical officers in the districts. \
However, considering the volatile situation and the risks faced by commuters on the roads, the health department did not permit its district officials to bring offline forms from Jiribam. As a result, the transportation of application forms from Jiribam to the directorate became a significant challenge, impeding the process of preparing the merit list.
Implications for Students and Future Challenges:
While the directorate remains hopeful of preparing the merit list soon, there are additional challenges ahead, particularly concerning the arrangement of classes for the admitted students.
The first batch of Meitei students at the Churachandpur Medical College (CMC) in the Kuki-inhabited Churachandpur district had to be evacuated due to security concerns and were allowed to join classes at the Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Sciences (JNIMS) in Imphal East.
Similarly, for the upcoming batch, the CMC may adopt a policy that allows students to choose between joining classes either in Imphal or at the CMC campus in Churachandpur. The final decision regarding the location of classes will be made after the counselling process, likely by August.
Furthermore, the delay in publishing the NEET-UG merit list has also raised concerns among the students and their families. The uncertainty surrounding the admission process has caused anxiety and confusion among aspiring medical students who have worked hard to secure a place in the prestigious medical colleges of Manipur. The lack of transparency and timely communication from the government has added to the frustration of the students, who are eagerly awaiting the publication of the merit list.
Additionally, the delay has also affected the overall timeline of the admission process. Once the merit list is announced, eligible students are required to report to their assigned colleges along with the nomination letters provided by the directorate.
However, the delay in the merit list declaration has compressed the timeline for students to complete the necessary formalities and join their respective colleges. This has added further pressure and inconvenience to the students and their families, who are now left with limited time to make the necessary arrangements for their academic journey.
Additionally, the challenges posed by the prevailing law and order situation, internet ban, and transportation issues have hindered the smooth execution of the offline application process. The government must address these issues promptly, ensure transparency in the process, and provide the necessary support to the students to alleviate their concerns and facilitate a seamless transition into their chosen medical colleges.