Chief Minister V Narayanasamy today said that he had requested the Centre to exempt Puducherry from NEET based selection of students for. medical colleges during the 2017-2018 academic year “I have written a letter to the Centre, making this plea,” he told reporters here today. Narayanasamy recalled that a resolution tabled by him on the floor of the assembly on January 24 on the matter had been adopted unanimously and it had since been sent to the Health Ministry to exempt Puducherry from the NEET purview. “We will not be able to accept NEET based selection as schools in the Union Territory are not fully equipped to adopt the CBSE syllabus, which is the criterion for NEET based selection for medical courses”, Narayanasamy said. He said he would reiterate the plea during his coming visit to Delhi and meeting with the Union Health Minister. Presently admissions to medical colleges, including privately managed institutions in the Union territory are through Centralised Admission Committee and on the basis of marks scored in the plus two public examinations.
Besides a State government run medical college, there are seven private institutions in the union territory.
Narayanasamy said air service from here would be revived soon and Air India had come forward to operate the service from Puducherry to Bangalore via Tiruchirapalli.
The expansion of the runway would be taken up once land needed for the purpose and which was in the territorial limits of Tamil Nadu (the airport is close to Tamil Nadu border) was available from the neighbouring State.
“We will work out necessary modalities and logistics to operate the service between Puducherry and Bangalore through negotiations with Air India in New Delhi shortly` the Chief Minister said.
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Narayanasamy also said the free rice scheme sought to be implemented in collaboration with State Trading Corporation to meet the requirements of rice was now being implemented after roping in several agencies by finalising tenders for supply.
He said the STC did not meet the UT’s needs to supply the rice free of cost through ration shops.
“We have now shifted to procure the rice from other agencies after finalising the supplies through tender system”, he said stating that around Rs 220 crore would be spent annually to supply rice every month to ration card holders.
Narayanasamy said that around 5,000 tonnes of rice was needed for supply to ration card holders.