Karnataka Examinations Authority says only students who are citizens of India will be allowed to take the test
Abhilash GR, currently a second-year pre-university (PU) student and an engineering aspirant wanted to take up Karnataka Common Entrance Test (K-CET) 2018, but his application was denied because he was born in the United States. While Abhilash was born in the US, his parents shifted to Bengaluru within a few years and Abhilash has spent more than 10 years in the city.
The Karnataka Examinations Authority (KEA) which released a brochure about the application process did not permit several other students who had PIO card (Person of Indian Origin) and OCI cards (Overseas Citizen of India).
During CET 2017, such candidates were allowed to participate in counselling and also allowed to take seats in another private quota apart from 15% seats reserved in the NRI quota.
“If a student has been studying in Karnataka for around nine years and their parents belong to Karnataka and have completed their studies in Karnataka, why has KEA refused to allow the student to apply for KCET?” asked a parent. “If the registration is denied to offspring born in another country where Indian parents resided due to professional responsibilities and later came back to India and have been paying taxes to the Indian government, where is the justice in this?”
Interestingly, the Karnataka High Court in the year 2016 asked the state government to take OCI and PIO students for CET exam. But this was only because some parents filed an appeal in the court over the same issue.
An official from the KEA told BM, “This has always been the case. If the student is a citizen of India, then he or she will be allowed to take up CET. We go by the rule book and the rule book says so. If any changes have to be made, then the government has to amend the rules. Till then, we have to stick to this.”
Anusha, another parent, said, “Why is there no equality in higher education department? How can they discriminate like this? We parents are born and brought up here and we cannot put our child to KCET. This is unfair.”
NEET for AYUSH
Starting this year, undergraduate seat aspirants for AYUSH courses in the state will have to appear for National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET).
The Karnataka Examinations Authority (KEA) has announced this decision taken by the state department of health and family welfare following the decision was taken by the Union Ministry of Ayush.
Based on the decision taken at the state department of health and family welfare, KEA has not included Ayush courses in the application released for Common Entrance Test (CET) 2018.
As per the information available from KEA, “The candidates who are willing to take up Ayush courses must register with NEET and KEA will not conduct CET for Ayush courses from CET 2018.”
During the academic year 2017-18, the Ayush ministry had announced that it will conduct NEET for Ayush courses but the move was postponed to 2018-19 as it was not accepted by several states.
HIGHER EDUCATION MINISTER OUT OF REACH
Anusha, a parent, had mailed the higher education minister Basavaraj Rayareddi on his email address [email protected] on February 1 regarding the same issue. The mail has bounced back with a reply: The recipient’s mailbox is full and can’t accept messages now. Please try resending this message later or contact the recipient directly. “If the minister cannot be reached by email, how can we expect the issue to be solved?” Anusha asked.