New Delhi : The Centre on Friday offered to include Urdu as the 11th language for answering the question papers in the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) for admissions to the MBBS and BDS courses, but only from the next year.

It told the Supreme Court that it was not feasible to include Urdu in the test this year on May 7 as last date for applications is already over on March 1, but it was open to consider it for the academic year 2018.

The Bench of Justices Kurian Joseph and R Banumathi, however, fixed further hearing on March 26, directing the Centre, the Medical Council of India (MCI), the Dental Council of India and the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), which is to conduct the test, to file their response by March 22.

Currently NEET is conducted in ten languages – English, Hindi, Gujarati, Marathia, Oriya, Bengali, Assamese, Telugu, Tamil and Kannada.

Earlier on March 3, the MCI had told the court that it was open to include any language as a medium of NEET if a request comes from a state government.

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Free Press Journal