By, Ved Prakash Beniwal
A New Year is a beginning of a new chapter, new hopes and new aspirations. Year 2020 has not been good for each one of us. As 2021 approaches, we all wish a good start and better forever.
Considering the fact that the pandemic had hit in 2020 and affected all the sectors including the education, this year is expected to open more opportunities for the students. For instance, medical aspirants are given conditional exemption to take admissions abroad in their desired universities even if they could not qualify NEET in 2020 and qualify NEET in 2021, JEE to be held 4 times a year starting 2021 onwards. With an opportunity to reappear NEET in 2021, the students have the benefit to save a year. Many students have opted for MBBS abroad admissions in their desired universities simultaneously aiming to give one more try for NEET. If they score good marks, they may get a seat in India else they have already started their study of medicine in universities abroad thereby saving a year.
Another factor that has added to their hope and confidence is that the universities offering MBBS abroad have offered the instalment plan to students for paying their fees. This has not only lessened the financial burden of parents but also boosted up the morale of the students. To mention on humanitarian grounds, MBBS in China has been a great deal this year. Where some universities have reduced their 1st year tuition fee to 50% others have offered scholarships to meritorious students, while many of them have permitted the students to pay fee in instalments no matter in which year the student is studying. A student scoring 300 plus marks in NEET is eligible for scholarship for MBBS in China.
While NEET 2020 got delayed in India, which is an entrance test for Indian medical aspirant, universities abroad also delayed their admission process and the session start date for Indian students. Some have even delayed this to March 2021 and are still open with the application process so that no willing student misses out the chance to apply for MBBS abroad. Many students who scored high in NEET attended the counselling in India and did not get the seat in desired colleges. Such students had applied for MBBS abroad after the counselling got over in India and yet got their seat for the study of medicine this year. They not only saved a year or say a session of 6 months with some universities rather applied without regrets of missing the counselling in India.
Most medical colleges in India have increased their fee this year. Also some state medical colleges and institutes have levied the filling of bonds. Haryana itself has increased its fee from Rs 4 lacs to Rs 10 lacs per year with the conditions to sign a bond. The students can pay this amount by taking the loans and the government would repay the instalments of the loan. According to the bond by Haryana Government, a student on completing MBBS will have to serve at the public health centres in rural areas. If the persons quits to work under the said conditions, the bond repayments shall not be borne by the government. Fee hike in Southern states like Kerala has also been reported this year. Where the fee was around 5-6 lacs till last year for private medical colleges, this year it has hiked to 12-13 lacs per year. The fee for private medical colleges in any Indian state is not less than 7-8lacs. Such high fee is creating financial burden on parents.
As compared to this, MBBS abroad is offered at a very low costing of Rs 2.5- 3 lacs and goes higher upto the limits one wants to extend. One more reason to lure Indian students towards MBBS abroad is their acceptability of NEET scores. NEET scores have gone reasonably high this year with a student scoring complete 720. Also, the NEET cut off for Govt medical colleges has hiked. Hence the students scoring close to 600 have also not got the medical colleges of their choice in India. Such students were left with options to choose either a private medical college if they could afford or opt for MBBS abroad where the latter seems to be a wise decision. Where such students could not secure their medical seat in India, these students are offered scholarships with premium government universities abroad.
With these changes in the Indian system, more students tend to get attracted towards MBBS abroad. Some have even cracked the opportunity this year while other medical aspirants are hopeful to apply for MBBS abroad after NEET 2021. Pocket friendly medical education in abroad seems to be a better return on investment. No one can deny the benefits aligned with MBBS abroad. Quality education, world class infrastructure, no entrance examination with most of the countries offering MBBS abroad, internationally recognized degrees, English medium and structured curriculum, better clinical practical and international exposure are just a few benefits known to all.
The author is the Director of Jagvimal Consultants.