Amid NEET scam, law proposing up to 10 years jail term, Rs one crore fine to curb malpractices takes effect from June 21

All offences under this Act are cognizable, non-bailable, and non-compoundable. Those found guilty of the offence can be sentenced to jail for 3-5 years.
Chikkamagaluru: Students take part in a protest organised by NSUI over the alleged irregularities in NEET-UG 2024 results, in Chikkamagaluru, Friday, June 21
Chikkamagaluru: Students take part in a protest organised by NSUI over the alleged irregularities in NEET-UG 2024 results, in Chikkamagaluru, Friday, June 21

The Centre on Friday notified a stringent law that aims to curb malpractices and irregularities in competitive examinations. This comes at a time when aspirants, students' unions and opposition parties are up in arms against the alleged NEET paper leak and malpractices relating to it and UGC-NET exams.

The law will come into operation with effect from June 21.

The said law, Public Examinations (Prevention of Unfair Means) Act, 2024 is a recently passed legislation in India aiming to curb cheating and uphold the integrity of public examinations.

The law, passed by the parliament on February 9, 2024, has provisions for a minimum of three to five years of imprisonment to curb cheating. Those involved in organised crimes of cheating will face five to 10 years of imprisonment and a minimum fine of Rs 1 crore.

The law also has provisions to attach and forfeit the property of an institution if they are found involved in an organised paper leak crime, and the proportionate cost of the examination shall also be recovered from it, India Today reported.

The Act covers examinations held by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC), the Staff Selection Commission, the Railways, banking recruitment examinations, and all computer-based examinations conducted by the National Testing Agency (NTA).

It is pertinent to note, Live Law noted, that the notification has come amidst widespread complaints regarding paper leak in the NEET-UG 2024 exam. The recently conducted UGC-NET exam was also cancelled recently following paper leak. However, it is to be noted that the Act will not have retrospective application to events prior to June 21..

Chikkamagaluru: Students take part in a protest organised by NSUI over the alleged irregularities in NEET-UG 2024 results, in Chikkamagaluru, Friday, June 21
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On Sunday, a NEET-UG retest window will open for 1,563 students. Six of their total seven centres have been changed by the National Testing Agency (NTA) and admit cards issued to the candidates.

These students were beneficiaries of grace marks because of loss of time.

After it created a national outrage, the compensatory marks were scrapped and a retest option provided with the proviso that the score in the fresh test alone will be considered for those who take it.

The only centre that was not changed is in Chandigarh, where only two students will sit for the retest. Officers of the NTA and the education ministry will be present at the centres.

Chikkamagaluru: Students take part in a protest organised by NSUI over the alleged irregularities in NEET-UG 2024 results, in Chikkamagaluru, Friday, June 21
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When asked about the expected turnout for Sunday’s retest, an official responded, “Admit cards have been issued to all. We will know the turnout only on Sunday.”

Joint CSIR-UGC-NET exam postponed

The NTA on Friday announced the postponement of the Joint CSIR-UGC-NET, scheduled to be held between June 25 and June 27, citing unavoidable circumstances and logistic issues

(With inputs from ENS)

Chikkamagaluru: Students take part in a protest organised by NSUI over the alleged irregularities in NEET-UG 2024 results, in Chikkamagaluru, Friday, June 21
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