A shot in the arm for dental, medical aspirants as govt. raises State share

Competition for a place in medical and dental colleges is likely to intensify among out-of-State aspirants as more than two-thirds of the seats in the State have been reserved for students from Karnataka.

Of the 6,615 seats in all medical colleges in the State, 72.24% have been reserved for students from the State. In dental colleges, it is 70.98% of the 2,740 seats. This includes seats in government colleges as well as government quota and institutional quota seats in private colleges. It also includes the NRI and management quotas.

Each category of college has a different seat matrix and seat-sharing formula. While government and government quota seats are subsidised, institutional quota seats are eight times as expensive as government quota ones.

Institutional quota seats reserved for students in the State will be made open to non-Karnataka students only if they go vacant. However, such a situation is unlikely given the high demand for seats.

With the common National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) kicking in, students from across the country were eligible to opt for institutional quota seats. But following pressure from students in the State, the government has decided to reserve for them 50% of the institutional quota seats in private colleges as well as a percentage of institutional quota seats in minority colleges. Karnataka has 44 medical and 38 dental colleges.

The move has brought cheer to college aspirants in Karnataka, but their counterparts from other States are less enthused. “We are disappointed as the State government enhanced the State share in institutional quota seats from 30% to 50% after we had registered,” a candidate from Kerala said.

Medical Education Minister Sharan Prakash Patil said the reservation was increased to ensure the interests of students from the State were protected. “Medical and dental seat aspirants from Karnataka need not worry as they will have an edge on students from other States,” he said.

Filling NRI quota seats

While the State government will conduct common counselling for all medical seats, excluding deemed university and all-India quota seats, the NRI quota seats in dental colleges will be filled by the college managements themselves.

M.R. Jayaram of the Karnataka Professional Colleges’ Foundation said the managements have decided to fill their NRI quota seats as they have received no regulations from the Dental Council of India on this. Fifteen per cent of the seats in private and minority medical colleges will be filled by NRIs, Persons of Indian Origin, and Overseas Citizens of India. There are 381 dental seats under the NRI quota in 21 private colleges and 14 minority dental colleges in the State.

Students irked by delay

Several medical and dental seat aspirants were left disappointed as the portal to enter options was not hosted on the KEA website by Wednesday. As per the schedule hosted on the website, the seat matrix should have been displayed on Tuesday and the option entry process started on Wednesday — both of which did not take place.

Medical Education Department officials said seven medical colleges under the Association of Minority Professional Colleges in Karnataka have approached the Supreme Court over fee revision. “As a result of this, we have not put up the seat matrix and opened the option entry portal. Students can access it on Thursday,” a source said. The seven colleges have 1,250 seats.

Ajay K., a medical seat aspirant, said, “I have blocked an engineering seat and I am keeping my fingers crossed for a medical seat. I hope KEA sticks to its schedule and does not delay it any further so that we can give up the engineering seat before the second extended round begins."

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Printable version | Oct 31, 2020 8:17:19 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/a-shot-in-the-arm-for-dental-medical-aspirants-as-govt-raises-state-share/article19309963.ece

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