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SC issues notice on plea seeking directions to NBE on NEET (PG) exam question paper, answer key

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New Delhi, June 20: The Supreme Court on Thursday issued notice on a plea seeking directions to the National Board of Examinations (NBE) to release the question paper and answer key of the NEET (PG) examination.

Agreeing to examine the plea, a vacation bench presided over by Justice Vikram Nath sought a response from the NBE, Medical Counselling Committee (MCC) and others. “Issue notice returnable on 8th of July, 2024.

In the meantime, respondents may file their counter affidavits,” ordered the Bench, also comprising Justice S.V.N. Bhatti. During the hearing, the National Testing Agency (NTA) said it is not a necessary party to the litigation and may be deleted from the array of parties. “The PG (entrance exam) is conducted by the National Board of Examination,” submitted NTA’s counsel.

After hearing the submission, Justice Bhatti said, “You may put it on record. When we pass an order, we will use our discretion under Supreme Court rules and delete you from the array of parties.”

The plea filed directly before the apex court assailed the “arbitrary act and decision” of NBE of not releasing the question paper, answer key, and answer sheet for NEET-PG 2022 and not allowing any option to re-evaluate the score, even after knowing the fact that there were “serious discrepancies” in the scores of the candidates who appeared for the exam in recent past, i.e., for NEET-PG 2021 and NEET-PG 2022.

“There are no other competitive exams in India, with such lack of transparency and complete one-sided flow of information as NEET-PG,” said the plea filed through advocate Charu Mathur. It added that the NEET-UG conducted by NTA gives an option to candidates to challenge the answer keys and several other prestigious exams, including IIT-JEE, CMAT, CLAT, and judicial services examinations, also give an option to challenge the answer keys.

However, the information bulletin published by NEET-PG 2024, following the trend of previous years, bars requests for accessing answer sheets and debars the petitioner from exercising her constitutional right and legitimate right to access her answer sheets even under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, 2005, the plea said. –IANS

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