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High Court Bench stays NEET results

The Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court on Wednesday granted an interim stay on the publication of results of the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) for admission to MBBS and BDS courses for the academic year 2017 across the country.

High Court Bench stays NEET results
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Madurai

Hearing a batch of petitions filed by some students, Justice M V Muralidharan of the court’s Madurai bench also directed officials of the Medical Council of India, the CBSE Director and the Union health ministry to file their counter affidavits on June 7. 

One of the petitioners, Sakthi Malarkodi from Tirchirappalli, had stated that NEET was introduced in 2012 and conducted for the first time in 2013 but the paper containing 180 questions had several irregularities. Over 115 students had approached the Supreme Court against the exam and had obtained a stay. 

A five-judge bench had allowed NEET to be held with several regulations. Based on the judgment, the Central government had passed an ordinance on NEET in 2016 and the exam was conducted countrywide on May 7 and questions were prepared in 10 languages. However, the students claimed that despite having a uniform syllabus, there was no uniformity in the question paper with questions in Hindi and Gujarati being easier compared to Tamil, Kannada, Bengali and Marathi. 

The students also submitted that officials had not informed them that different sets of question papers would be circulated. In Tamil Nadu, a different set of questions was given to those who opted for English and Tamil, they said, adding that the one in Tamil was easier. “One India, one question paper in the NEET is a must. Otherwise the scaling of intelligence and aptitude would differ. Hence, the NEET examination should be cancelled and fresh examination with uniform question papers be conducted,” the petitioners submitted. The admission for Medical and Dental courses based on NEET marks should also be stayed, said the  petitioner.

Earlier, a similar petition was filed by eight others and the High Court had ordered CBSE and Central government to file counter affidavit. The earlier petition was clubbed along with the petition of Sakthi Malarkodi and heard on Wednesday. At the hearing KR Lakshman, representing the Centre, argued that cases pertaining to NEET are already pending and CBSE has been directed to file counter affidavit in the cases. As CBSE needs more time, he prayed the court not to take any decision on the petition. 

Justice Muralidharan said that since the petitioners have claimed discrepancy in NEET, results should not be announced before the CBSE and other officials submit counter affidavits. 

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