'DMK is responsible for the death of NEET aspirants in TN': How CM EPS shocked Stalin's camp?

In what has become one of his fierce addresses at the legislative assembly, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami had batted the ball of NEET on the court of DMK- Congress alliance and strongly attacked the allied parties for bringing the NEET exam, amid the state has been staunchly demanding to ban NEET, following the death of three NEET aspirants, who committed suicide last Saturday. 

As the sequel of the COVID-19 impact, the Tamil Nadu legislative assembly had convened in Kalaivanar Hall with strict protocols for the legislators, amid having a range of issues on the fray from the government's response in dealing the COVID-19 outbreak to the economy. Recently, the suicides of three NEET aspirants ahead of the exam had brought the debate over NEET to the limelight with the political parties and students protesting and urging the government to repeal the national entrance exam. 

As the assembly neared when the developments of suicides hit the state, the opposition parties had come with the agenda to attack the ruling ADMK government over the NEET issue. When the assembly had convened on Tuesday, the floor had witnessed a ruckus between the ADMK, and DMK-Congress parties. The arguments between the parties had begun after assembly speaker P Dhanapal had called the parties to express their views and opposition on the NEET issue. 

DMK President and state opposition leader MK Stalin has made statements against the ruling ADMK party over implementing the NEET and following Stalin's statement, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami had taken the space of attacking the opposition. By sending a shock through his tone, the Chief Minister had directly blamed the DMK-Congress alliance for implementing the exams. He said that the DMK-Congress alliance had introduced the NEET in 2010 when the alliance was in the power at the center and state. 

By holding the DMK responsible for the death of 13 NEET aspirants in the state, the Chief Minister outlined that former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa had fought against the NEET in the Supreme Court while the wife of Congress leader P Chidambaram had fought for it. Palaniswami stated that Former Congress minister Chidambaram's wife Nalini Chidambaram had fought in the Supreme Court to bring the NEET to Tamil Nadu. 

The legislators of the Congress party had uproared against the Chief Minister after the latter had referred Chidambaram's wife and advocate Nalini Chidambaram. The Congress MLAs had said that the actions of the individual person cannot be mentioned in the house and demanded the speaker to remove the statement of the Chief Minister from the record. However, the Speaker rejected their demand after which the MLAs held a protest in the Assembly, and by citing that the Congress MLAs are causing disruption to the assembly, the speaker ordered them to vacate the assembly following which they were evicted. 

While addressing the reporters outside the assembly after getting evicted from the house, Congress leader and MLA KR Ramasamy had denied the allegations mounted by the ADMK. He said that the ADMK stated Congress had brought the NEET, but at the same time, it was optional for all the states and they could take a final call. Ramasamy stated that the ADMK is saying Congress had purposely brought NEET. When cases were in the Supreme Court, several lawyers, including Nalini Chidambaram were part of it. However, Congress has been against NEET and Nalini Chidambaram cannot be brought into this issue. 

The Congress MLAs had also denied the statement of the Chief Minister that the DMK-Congress alliance was responsible for implementing the NEET. NEET had gained a space of scathing debate in the state following the suicides of three aspirants in Tamil Nadu, who died on the same day - last Saturday. These three students - one each from Madurai, Dharmapuri, and Namakkal had committed suicide at their respective homes, exactly one day ahead of the exam. 

These three students had been preparing for the exam for the past one year and the back to back deaths had apparently sent shockwaves across the state and exhibited the factor of dismay and challenges endured by the students in appearing and clearing the national entrance test to purse the medical studies and stirred the debates and demands over repealing the exam, amid Center's claim that the students have been welcoming the exam. 

According to the reports, the Medical Council of India had published the Gazette of India on December 21, 2010, which modified the Regulations on Graduate Medical Education, 1997 to introduce the single eligibility entrance test across the nation for admitting the students for MBBS and other medical courses. While the first NEET exam was scheduled in 2012, it had drawn massive flak which deferred the entrance exam and the first entrance test was conducted in 2016.