Stalin urges PM Modi to reconsider decision to hold NEET | Chennai News – Times of India


CHENNAI: Tamil Nadu chief minister M K Stalin on Friday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to reconsider the decision to hold competitive examinations, including National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) for admission into medical and dental courses, as it may lead to Covid-19 spread. He also requested the Centre to bring the GST on all Covid-related items to zero rate.
Stalin was speaking at the Prime Minister’s video conference with the chief ministers on Covid-19 situation and vaccine-related issues. NEET is scheduled to be held on September 12.
“Schools and colleges remain closed. At this pandemic situation, conducting national level exams like NEET may result in the spread of the disease. Hence, I request the Prime Minister to reconsider the decision,” the chief minister said.
He asserted that the state government was making all preparations to manage the possible third wave and urged the Centre to allocate more resources to Tamil Nadu.
The new government led by him had faced the pandemic challenges, reduced the deaths and contained the infectious disease, Stalin said.
“My government has reduced vaccine shortage from 6% to 0% and successfully created vaccine awareness. Now the demand for vaccines in Tamil Nadu is very high,” the CM said, pointing to the low allotment of vaccine to Tamil Nadu when compared to other states and sought the support of the Prime Minister on the vital issue. He thanked the Union government for increasing the allocation of oxygen and live-saving drug remdesivir to Tamil Nadu.
On Tuesday, Stalin wrote a letter to Modi, seeking his intervention to correct the imbalance in the vaccine allocation to the state and a request for a special allocation of one crore vaccine doses. The state had not received vaccine in proportionate to its population size resulting in shortage. Stalin had complained that number of vaccine doses provided to the state was only 302 per thousand per population, while Gujarat, Karnataka and Rajasthan received 533, 493 and 446 respectively.
Reminding his government’s distribution of Covid relief of Rs 4,000 in two instalments to two crore family cardholders, along with a grocery kit of 14 items, the chief minister urged the Union government to provide additional rice to all eligible cardholders since the allotment was made only for priority cardholders.
“I assure that Tamil Nadu will take all necessary steps to effectively handle this pandemic and stand firm with you to overcome this challenge,” Stalin said.

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