NEET UG 2021: SC sets aside Bombay HC order, refuses holding re-exam of two students

The Bombay High Court had directed the National Testing Agency (NTA) to conduct a re-exam of two applicants, after a mix-up of their booklets and OMR sheets

Representational image. ANI

The Supreme Court has set aside the Bombay High Court order for the fresh exam of two National Eligibility cum Entrance Examination undergraduate (NEET UG) 2021 aspirants. The apex court said that while it sympathised with the plight of the candidates, the decision could set a pattern to re-conduct the NEET exams.

The Bombay High Court had directed the National Testing Agency (NTA) to conduct a re-exam of two applicants, after a mix-up of their booklets and OMR sheets. The Court had also ordered the NTA to inform the students 48 hours in advance about the centre and date.

The Supreme Court bench comprising of Justices BR Gavai and L Nageswara Rao said that ordering the NTA to hold the exam again for two students would lead to candidates coming forward and asking for “a re-exam for one mistake or the other,” every year, as per news reports.

The apex court also noted that the marks of the affected candidates had been calculated by the NTA without insisting on the OMR sheet and test booklet code being different, as per the submission made by the Agency to the Bombay High Court.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who was representing the NTA, had argued that some mistakes could result in the conduct of the NEET exam since lakhs of applicants appeared for the exam all over the country, but if those mistakes are taken as “a cause for re-examination, it will be never ending”.
The lawyer representing the students, Advocate Sudhanshu Choudhuri, had argued that the affected candidates, Vaishnavi Bhopale and Abhishek Kapse, had excellent academic records and “cannot be made to suffer”. However, the court declined to hold a NEET UG 2021 exam for them.

The Bombay High Court had also ordered the NTA to hold the results of the NEET UG 2021 students till the re-exam was done. However, the Supreme Court had later stayed the order, allowing the NTA to release the NEET UG results.
Over 16 lakh candidates had appeared for the undergraduate medical entrance exam on 12 September, with the results being out on 1 November.

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