Iranian Medical Students May Have to Leave India

Iranian Medical Students May Have to Leave IndiaIranian Medical Students May Have to Leave India

Iranian students in India may have to leave, after the Supreme Court passed judgment that stipulates that all university students at the under graduate and post graduate levels pass the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET entrance exam).

The future of nearly 120 Iranian students enrolled in dental and medical colleges in Indian universities remains in limbo, as the Supreme Court ruling of May this year made NEET examinations mandatory for all students seeking admissions in government, private and deemed institutes, news outlets reported.

The NEET is an entrance examination  across India for students who wish to study in any graduate medical course (MBBS), dental course (BDS) or postgraduate course (MD / MS) in government or private medical colleges in India.

Amidst all the confusion in the country regarding NEET and the future of state-organized medical entrance examinations, foreign nationals who had applied for MBBS (bachelor of medicine, bachelor of surgery) and BDS (bachelor of dental surgery) courses in Indian private institutions for the academic year 2016 have already been asked to leave.

“While the court ruling specifies that NEET needs to be cleared by all students, the NEET eligibility criteria says only Indian nationals and Overseas Citizens of India (OCI) can take the exam, and makes no mention of foreign nationals,” said Iran’s research counselor at the embassy in New Delhi, Mohammad Reza Khalili, as reported by Mehr News Agency.

The court ruling has come into effect after students received admissions and started classes for about a week after full payment of tuition fee of $60,000-$85,000, reported.

According to Khalili, about 120 Iranian students are registered at MGR University of Chennai, Manipal University in Manipal, Karnataka, and Punjab University of Chandigarh for the 2016-2017 academic year.

  A Year Lost and No Fee Refund

Students from various countries, including Iran, who have applied for MBBS and BDS courses in India, may now lose a year. Based on the ruling, students should cancel their enrollment and get a refund, but the universities are reportedly refusing to refund the tuition fee.

“Indian officials have not responded to our numerous calls requesting immediate action on the issue, and universities and academic institutes are obliged to implement the verdict,” Khalili said.

Narayana Sabhahit, the registrar of Manipal University, told the Sunday Guardian on Monday that they were stuck between a rock and a hard place.

“We are actually helpless. We had to ask them (foreign students) to leave. We wrote to the Ministry of Human Resource Development questioning the policy. The government on the one hand says students from abroad should come and study in India and on the other hand, NEET has to be cleared by everyone when there is no provision for foreign nationals to write the examination. We are in a fix.”

He added, “The students in our university are going through trauma for the last 10 days. They are literally in tears. We tried our best to fight their case. The Medical Council of India should have included foreign nationals in the criteria of eligibility. The government will definitely have to change its policies. We will be taking up the matter with the government.”

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