NEET row: SC tells NTA, Centre to admit ‘lapse’, take timely action

New Delhi, June 18 (UNI) Directing timely remedial action, the Supreme Court on Tuesday told the Centre and National Testing Agency (NTA) that even if there is 0.001 per cent chance of negligence on anyone’s part in the conduct of the NEET-UG 2024 exam held in May, “accept it, and deal with it by taking appropriate action on time to instil confidence among students”.

Asking NTA to introspect on the issue, a Vacation Bench of Justice Vikram Nath and Justice SVN Bhatti said, “If an ineligible candidate involved in fraud becomes a doctor, such a person will pose a big threat to society… we are aware of the amount of effort that goes into preparations for the exam.”

The court’s remarks came during the hearing of a petition seeking cancellation and re-conduct of NEET UG 2024, amid allegations of serious irregularities in the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test conducted for admission into medical colleges. The exam was held on May 5 and results were declared on June 4.

Asking the NTA to admit if there has been a mistake, the court said, “Accept it, and deal with it by taking appropriate action on time to instill confidence among students.”

The Bench issued notice to the Center and NTA and asked them to put forth their stand on the petition seeking cancellation of NEET UG 2024 due to alleged leaking of question paper before the exam and other irregularities in the preparation of the exam.

The bench will hear the matter next on July 8 along with other related petitions.

In an earlier hearing, the NTA had got the top court’s nod to conduct a fresh test on June 23 for 1,563 candidates who were granted grace marks for delay in getting question paper in the NEET-UG held on May 5. These candidates have the option to take the re-test or accept their score, minus the grace marks.

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