NEET row: SC refuses to defer counselling; 1563 students to take exam again on Sunday


New Delhi: The Supreme Court Friday refused to defer the NEET-UG counselling process, scheduled to kick off on July 6, saying it is not an “open and shut” exercise, even as the political pot kept boiling over the controversy-ridden exam with the opposition attacking the Centre over alleged paper leak and other irregularities.
The National Testing Agency (NTA), under fire over the lapses in the conduct of NEET and UGC-NET, is gearing up to conduct on Sunday a retest for the medical entrance exam for 1,563 candidates who were earlier awarded grace marks to make up for the loss of time at six centres.
The Congress party, meanwhile, staged protests across the country over the alleged irregularities and demanded the resignation of Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, who skipped the Delhi University’s Yoga Day event where some students held a protest against the alleged irregularities. Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra launched a scathing attack on the government, saying the issue has become a national problem under the BJP rule which has “ruined the future” of crores of youth.
The protests came a day after Pradhan ruled out any immediate action towards cancelling the NEET, saying the government cannot jeopardise careers of lakhs of students who cleared the exam rightfully because of isolated incidents of malpractices.
According to NTA officials, the re-exam for 1,563 candidates scheduled on Sunday would be conducted at seven centres.
“While all other examination centres have changed, one centre in Chandigarh, where only two candidates will appear, will remain the same. Besides, officials from the agency and Union education ministry will also be present at these centres. The step has been taken to ensure smooth conduct of the re-exam,” a senior NTA official added.

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