Government open to fresh NEET-UG for all if Supreme Court issues orders

An official source told TNIE that the ministry is ready to organise a retest for all 24 lakh NEET-UG aspirants if the court gives the go-ahead.
Students stage a protest demanding re-examination of NEET-UG 2024 results.
Students stage a protest demanding re-examination of NEET-UG 2024 results.Express Photo

NEW DELHI: The Union Education Ministry is not averse to conducting a fresh round of the National Eligibility-Cum-Entrance Test-Undergraduate (NEET-UG), subject to directives from the Supreme Court’s scheduled hearing on July 8.

An official source told this paper that the ministry is ready to organise a retest for all 24 lakh NEET-UG aspirants if the court gives the go-ahead.

Sources suggested that one potential approach is to not limit the retest to the 1,563 candidates who were given grace marks and open it to all the students who want to go for re-examination. The National Testing Agency (NTA), which conducted the medical exams, informed the Supreme Court that retest for the over 1,500 students will be conducted on June 23 and the results will be announced by June 30. The court has not stalled the counselling process, which will begin from July 6.

When asked whether this would entail a comprehensive retest rather than a selective approach, sources acknowledged the possibility of a complete new exam if directed by the court. They also highlighted Union education minister Dharmendra Pradhan’s “profound concern” regarding the NEET-UG controversy, underscoring his commitment to addressing it as a “top priority”.

Students stage a protest demanding re-examination of NEET-UG 2024 results.
NEET-UG row: BJP-ruled states become epicenter of paper leaks, Rahul slams Modi for remaining silent

“The minister’s main objective is to identify the root cause and rectify it as soon as possible,” a source said. This year’s exam posed a unique challenge: a record number of candidates got the perfect score on 720 on 720, significantly altering the ranking dynamics and intensifying competition for medical college admission, especially in government colleges.

Since the announcement of results on June 4, the NTA has come under severe criticism for alleged paper leaks, number of high rankings, discrepancies in the allocation of grace marks, fraudulent activities and other irregularities. Students, parents, educators and even medical associations have called for a retest and a CBI probe. Around 30 petitions have been filed in the Supreme Court on the matter, besides a large number of pleas in various high courts.

UGC-NET cancelled, CBI probe ordered

The education ministry on Wednesday proactively cancelled the UGC-NET exam following inputs that its integrity may have been compromised. The matter has been handed over to the CBI for probe. The schedule of the fresh exam will be announced later.

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