NEET fear: MBBS aspirant in Tamil Nadu ends life a day before test

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Jothy Sridurga is the third person to commit suicide in Tamil Nadu due to pressure over the NEET in the last one month. 

A 19-year-old MBBS aspirant from Madurai in Tamil Nadu ended her life just a day before the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) for admissions to medical colleges. This is the second such death in two days and third in the last month in the state.

19-year-old R Subashri from Ariyalur district committed suicide on Tuesday, September 8, and another teenager Vignesh from Coimbatore a day after the Supreme Court dismissed pleas seeking postponement of the examination.

The girl from Maduri, Jothi Sridurga, who had written the NEET last year but only managed to score 100 odd marks, was attending coaching classes for attempting the test this year. She was extremely worried about getting admission in a good college.

In a suicide note left behind by Jothi Sri, she wrote, "I really studied well. But I'm afraid. If I can't get the medical seat, I will disappoint everyone, who reposed hopes on me."

Further, addressing her aunt in the letter, Durga said that if she fails to get a seat in medical college, all their (family) hard work will go in vain. She also recorded audio for her family and apologized to them for taking the extreme step of ending her life.

Sridurga lived with her parents and brother in the armed forces reserve quarters in Madurai. Her father Murugasundaram serves in the fifth battalion of the armed forces. According to her family, she had seemed fine while talking to them during dinner and had gone to sleep.

However, on Saturday morning, when they knocked on her door, there was no response from the room. They then called her on her cellphone and when she didn't pick, they broke the door open. Jyothi was found dead in the room and had left behind a letter and video expressing her fear of the exam to her parents, according to News Minute.

Reacting to the death of Jothi Sri, Tamil Nadu opposition leader MK Stalin advised students that suicide is not a solution. "From Anitha (a student who died by suicide in 2017 over failure to clear NEET) to Jothi Sri, NEET exams have been a fear factor for students," Stalin said in a tweet.

A huge political row has been brewing in Tamil Nadu over NEET examination. Almost all political parties in the state have repeatedly demanded the central government to scrap the common entrance test as they believe it discriminates against students coming from rural and economically backward families.

All parties in the state, including the ruling AIADMK, has been opposed to NEET on similar grounds. The Central government has been justifying NEET, saying it is to upgrade the standard of medical education and prevent commercialisation of medical education.

The PMK top leader, an ally of the ruling AIADMK-led alliance in which the BJP is also a constituent, alleged NEET was being held only for private coaching institutions to indulge in profiteering.

"If this situation continues, there is a threat of many students resorting to suicide every year due to fear and frustration over the NEET. To prevent this, the Centre should come forward to permanently scrap the NEET.

Image Credit: News Minute

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