Indian medical students’ future is on stake after facing trouble from China and Russia-Ukraine war

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A prime concept that came up in front of Indian administration after Russia’s invasion in Ukraine is to study abroad over choosing to stay here. After Russia’s President Vladimir Putin decided to invade Ukraine through borders and skylines, Indian administration is on its mission to evacuate all the Indians, majorly students who were pursuing higher studies in the country. Surprisingly, maximum is from medical field and just started their semesters. No doubt, studying overseas is not a new concept in India and is being followed even before independence. But it is odd that despite of some prestigious medical colleges situated in India, students prefer abroad and some specific countries for studying medicine. According to the information, Russia, Ukraine, China and Philippines are some of the favored locations Indians go for study.

In an interaction with the students who were brought back from war hit Ukraine in an operation ‘Ganga’, Indian Prime minister Narendra Modi said that if medical education policies were appropriate right from before, then students would not have to go abroad. No parents want their children to go overseas at such a young age, he said. He also assured that his administration is working to correct the past mistakes. He further added that his attempt is to have one medical college in every district so that more doctors will be produced in coming 10 years than last 70 years. During the conversation, he also mentioned the work his administration did in medical sector, and constructed double medical colleges under his leadership.

Avinash Yadav is evacuated from Ukraine by Indian administration along with his mates a three days ago. Resident of Mumbai, Avinash wanted to pursue medicine and decided to give a shot in India. He could not clear NEET, All India Pre-Medical Test and opted to pursue it through Indian private college. But since the fee structure was very high, he preferred to go Ukraine and study further. He said, ‘It is my dream to serve in medical field and so when I couldn’t clear NEET exam, I started finding other options. I looked for private medical colleges in India, but the affordability rate was not high. And that is how I reached Ukraine.’ He added that there were many Indian students who opted Ukraine for one of this reason. Russia and China offer lowest fee structure for candidates who aspire to gain knowledge in medical field, according to the information. Since the outbreak of Covid, Indian students returned from China due to lockdown and Covid restrictions and are still facing issues.

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Information says, Chinese authorities are declining to give permit to students from last two years and instead providing online courses to international students that are not recognized by India, mentioned National Medical Commission. Now students are asking administration to address the issue and resolves the matter. James’s younger brother is pursuing medicine from Tianjin, China and has not heard anything from the Indian authorities or college authorities. He told Eat News, ‘He got admission in the year of 2019. After Covid restrictions, he came back and has not head regarding reopening from the college authorities. They are offering some online courses but, it is for no good in India. It’s been two years and we are worried about his future. Students are stuck and has no update. I on the behalf of all the parents urge Indian administration to look into the matter and solve it as soon as possible.’

Regarding the matter Chinese authorities also issued a statement claiming that the return of Indian students has nothing to do with politics and they are working on the matter. As per the available details, more than 23,000 Indian students enrolled in Chinese programmes. Fee structure is a major point for Indian medical students to choose China and Russia to pursue higher studies over India and any other country. The picture is getting clear why Indian medical students are facing several obstacles from around the corner of world.

James shared that his brother planned to serve as a doctor in India, once his studies would get over. ‘He discussed with us that once he will complete his course, he will come back to India to gain practical knowledge in the field. He was about to finish his course and even started looking for the internships. But from last two years, his future is uncertain’, said James. Indian fee structure of private colleges is double to triple than medical colleges in Russia and China, comparatively. Meanwhile, the other reason that flashed from Indian medical students to why prefer abroad is, that Indian medical colleges lack in providing practical knowledge. Avinash explained, ‘Other than fee structure, lack of practical knowledge here convinces students to move overseas. Here, the major focus is on theoretical knowledge but we require practical knowledge too to polish our skills and serve responsibly.’

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World is witnessing chaos and it is directly affecting Indian medical students and their career. Be it Covid restrictions in China or Russia-Ukraine war, Indian parents are compelled to decide whether sending children abroad for higher studies is a good option or not.  

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Shefali Ranawat is an Eat News correspondent in India. She want to be the voice of people. Also, she aim to be a war correspondent.


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