NEET: 23 students will compete for each seat this time
The number of candidates registering for the NEET 2018 has increased by a whopping 2L since last year. This time, 13.36L candidates would be competing for the 60,000 seats in MBBS and BDS institutes across India; there were 11.5L candidates in 2017. But the dress code remains the same: students have to wear "light-colored half-sleeve dress" and no shoes.
NEET, conducted by the CBSE, decides admissions into graduate/postgraduate medical courses like MBBS, BDS, MD or MS in colleges run under the Medical/Dental Council of India. This is the third time undergraduate medical college admissions are being decided through NEET. The exam is scheduled to be conducted across India on May 6. Results will be out in June.
Since the exam was mandated for admission to all medical and dental institutes, more and more states have been getting rid of their own Common Entrance Tests and opting for NEET. Moreover, the number of students qualifying Plus-2 exams is also increasing due to "various policies and scholarships by the Center and states," said Dr Pravin Shingare, director, Directorate of Medical Education & Research.
Due to these factors, registrations for NEET have been sharply increasing, and the trend is expected to continue: in 2016, there were only 7.5L candidates, up by 53% to 11.5L the next year, and up by another 17% to 13.36L this time. "Sadly the number of seats is still very limited and the competition keeps getting tougher," said Aruna Roy, a candidate's parent.
Meanwhile, the CBSE has asked students to wear "light clothes with half-sleeves, not having big buttons, brooch/badge, flower etc with salwar/trouser," and "slippers, sandals with low heels, not shoes." If students want to wear their "customary dress," they will have to reach the exam center an hour earlier to ensure timely security check. Cellphones, geometry/pencil box, handbags, belt, watches and other items are banned.