UGC-NET Case New Scandal In Series Of Scams: Bengal Education Minister

UGC-NET Case New Scandal In Series Of Scams: Bengal Education Minister

UGC-NET is a test to determine the eligibility of Indian nationals for the award of junior research fellowship, for appointment as assistant professors and admission to PhD in Indian universities and colleges.

PTIUpdated: Friday, June 21, 2024, 07:42 PM IST
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West Bengal Education Minister Bratya Basu | PTI File Photo

West Bengal Education Minister Bratya Basu on Thursday said the Centre’s decision to cancel UGC-NET indicated that it was "yet another scandal in a series" of such incidents.

"Amid a massive row on the medical entrance exam NEET over alleged irregularities, with the issue now before the Supreme Court, the Centre on June 19 ordered the cancellation of the UGC-NET following inputs that the exam's integrity may have been compromised and handed over the matter to the CBI for an investigation," the minister posted on X.

"New scam in the market in the series of scams! Cancellation of UGC-NET due to compromised integrity of the examinations," Basu added.

UGC-NET is a test to determine the eligibility of Indian nationals for the award of junior research fellowship, for appointment as assistant professors and admission to PhD in Indian universities and colleges.

Wondering if the masterminds can be touched by the central agency, he posted, "CBI inquiry has been ordered! Question is can they nab the Head."

Basu, however, did not specify whom he was alluding to as 'Head'. Basu later told reporters that while opposition parties had cast aspersions on the credibility of a reputable state agency like CID in matters of investigating teaching job irregularities in Bengal, doubts should equally be expressed about the independence and credibility of a central probe agency like the CBI, which has been entrusted with investigating the UGC-NET scam.

"We can be assured only if the CBI can track down all those involved, including the kingpins of the scandal in BJP-ruled states. Will the CBI do that? I am not sure," he said. Earlier, he had urged central agencies to investigate NEET irregularities, questioning whether the Centre's response will match its vigilance in probing a teaching job "scandal" in West Bengal.

"We demand justice and transparency in both cases," he had told reporters last week. Meanwhile, Jadavpur University Teachers' Association (JUTA) demanded for a new date for the cancelled UGC-NET exam. Justifying the cancellation, the Ministry of Education cited inputs from the National Cyber Crime Threat Analytics Unit, suggesting potential compromise in the exam's integrity.

"To ensure transparency and sanctity, UGC-NET June 2024 exam is cancelled," the ministry announced Wednesday night, promising details for a fresh examination alongside handing the matter to CBI for thorough investigation. In a departure from past practices, this year's National Eligibility Test (NET) was held on June 18 in pen-and-paper format, attracting a record 11 lakh student registrations.

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