This was a spoof waiting to be executed. The Central Board of Secondary Education, which administers the National Eligibility and Entrance Test (NEET) for dental and medical courses, had made a bizarre set of rules for students appearing for the exam, banning everything from full-sleeve clothes, dark-coloured trousers, closed or high-heeled shoes, big brooches, metal buttons, metal earrings and even inner-wear such as bras with hooks!
With so much fodder available, the movers and shakers of NEET were, naturally, lampooned in a Tamil-language spoof called I don’t NEET you.
The eight-minute video showcases events at a NEET centre that don’t seem too far removed from reality. Students are asked to strip down and are frisked with metal detectors. Women are told there’s no place for them inside, because, well, the Manusmriti says so.
The video is replete with subversive pop culture as well as political references, ranging from SS Rajamouli’s blockbuster Bahubali 2 – rejoicing in the Kshatriya-ness of the lead character – to the atmosphere of hostility against Muslims and the attempt to impose Hindi.
There’s also wicked wordplay, such as the one linking NEET with “neetu” which means “stretch your legs” in Tamil. This video certainly stretches many things, with great effect. Especially at the end.