Protesters raised concerns over MDCAT tests
A number of students gathered outside Governor House in Karachi and protested against the Higher Education Commission’s new associate degree programme.
With placards in their hands, the protesters demanded that the commission bring back two-year bachelor’s degree programmes as hundreds of students cannot enroll in four-year degrees.
Earlier this year, HEC abolished the two-year B.Com or BSc degrees at universities across the country citing that these degrees are not accepted internationally.
The protesters raised concerns over alleged corruption in the Medical and Dental Colleges Admissions Test (MDCAT) conducted by the Pakistan Medical Commission.
They said that the Pakistan Medical and Dental Council should be immediately restored and a re-admission test should be held.
The protest was organised by the Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba. Jamaat-e-Islami President Hafiz Naeem ur Rehman, who attended the protest, said that these institutions were putting the future of students at stake.
“Today degrees can easily be sold and bought,” he said, adding that a system like this is not acceptable.
On December 16, PMC withdrew the MDCAT result that was released online after students across the country complained of unfair marking and discrepancies in roll numbers and attendance.
Controversy has surrounded the entry test for most of the year.
In August, students protested against the medical licensing body and demanded the admission criteria be changed and MDCAT date postponed.
The criterion for the admission gives 50% weightage to the results of the final exams and 50% to the entry test. Students wanted the weightage for the entry test to increase from 50% to 70% because they were not able to take their final exams this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
They demanded a change in the date because they claimed they did not get sufficient time to prepare for the exam because of the coronavirus lockdown.
In November, Hindu students demanded the test date be changed as it was clashing with Diwali. Earlier in the month, the Sindh High Court postponed the medical exams that were supposed to be taken on November 14 after multiple petitions were filed against the PMC by students.