Many foreign students who had enrolled for the current year of undergraduate programs in private medical colleges in India now confront an unverifiable future due to a "tricky" domestic legislation regarding entrance examination for them.
International students in India come to seek MBBS or BDS courses either through an institutional quota system, as in government colleges, or by specifically applying to private colleges.
Due to the recent ruling of the Supreme Court on making the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) obligatory for admission to private and deemed universities, the foreign nationals are presently confronting vulnerability as they do not fall under the NEET criteria. The NEET qualification criteria states that only Indian nationals or Overseas citizens of India can take the exam. It does not have any specified provisions for foreign nationals.
The colleges have apparently requested that international students leave the campuses within a week.
Tilak Silva, father of Shenali, a student who applied from Colombo for a BDS course at Manipal University, said that his daughter and other international students are stuck in such a situation because of the precarious NEET procedure.
Silva additionally affirmed that after the apex court's ruling, the Medical Council of India (MCI) and Dental Council of India (DCI) have been "pressurising" colleges to "permit admission to just those students who have taken NEET”.
When the parents and students approached DCI President Dr. Dibyendu Mazumdar, he stated that it is the decision of the Supreme Court, and they could not do much about it and the colleges need to submit to the same.
The circumstances appear to be irregular given India's global approach to education. On the other hand, the government sources said that they are investigating the matter.