Explained: What Is The National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) (Undergraduate) Exam Controversy

Explained: What Is The National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) (Undergraduate) Exam Controversy

NEET UG results were declared on June 4 and students pointed out discrepancies in the NEET results for 2024.

Manasi KambleUpdated: Wednesday, June 12, 2024, 11:44 AM IST
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Students stage a protest against the alleged irregularities in the NEET-UG examination results, in Kolkata. | ANI

The release of the NEET-UG 2024 exam results has stirred a controversy, fueled by a myriad of concerning factors that have cast a shadow over the integrity of the entire examination process. From anomalies in the announcement of results to allegations of paper leaks and political backlash, the saga of NEET-UG 2024 has unfolded as a tale of uncertainty and dismay.

The NEET Exam Controversy

The journey of controversy begins with the unexpected shift in the declaration date of the NEET-UG 2024 results. Originally slated for June 14, the results surfaced prematurely on June 4, a full ten days ahead of schedule. This abrupt deviation from the planned timeline immediately raised suspicions, particularly when juxtaposed with the announcement of Lok Sabha poll results on the same day. The coincidence sparked conjectures and fueled speculations regarding the motives behind the hasty release of the NEET results, adding a layer of intrigue to an already contentious situation.

Inconsistencies in Scores

As the dust settled around the premature release of results, attention turned to the curious case of strikingly similar roll numbers among top scorers and anomalies in the scoring system. A staggering 67 students purportedly achieved a perfect score of 720, a statistical anomaly that raised eyebrows and prompted questions about the validity of the scoring mechanism employed in the examination. Moreover, reports emerged of students receiving scores of 718 or 719, a discrepancy that clashed with the established NEET marking scheme, thereby further undermining confidence in the credibility of the results.

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Screengrab | X

Allegations of Paper Leaks

Amidst the cacophony of discontent, whispers of question paper leaks echoed across examination halls, particularly emanating from an exam center in Rajasthan. Disturbing accounts surfaced, alleging that students were furnished with question papers bearing pre-marked answers, while some Hindi medium students found themselves grappling with English question papers. These damning revelations, coupled with the dissemination of purported images on social media platforms, painted a damning picture of systemic malpractice and incompetence. However, the National Testing Agency (NTA) swiftly moved to dispel these accusations, vehemently refuting claims of paper leaks and attributing the purported images to baseless fabrications.

NTA's Response

In the eye of the storm, the National Testing Agency (NTA) emerged as a bastion of defense, steadfastly defending its actions and offering explanations for the alleged irregularities. The NTA contended that the premature release of results was necessitated by the application of a normalization formula designed to mitigate the impact of lost time during the examination. This adjustment, they asserted, accounted for the seemingly improbable scores of 718 or 719 received by certain candidates. Furthermore, addressing the allegations of paper leaks, NTA clarified that an isolated incident occurred at a center in Rajasthan, where students illicitly procured question papers before the conclusion of the examination, thereby absolving the agency of any culpability in the matter.

NTA official statement

NTA official statement | X

Political Reactions

Amid the maelstrom of controversy, political figures seized the opportunity to stake their claims and level accusations at the doorstep of the government. Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra of the Congress Party emerged as vocal critics, lambasting the government for its purported negligence and ineptitude in overseeing the NEET-UG examination.

Rahul Gandhi decried the irregularities in the examination process as a grave injustice perpetrated against millions of aspiring students, while Priyanka Gandhi Vadra called for a comprehensive investigation into the grievances raised by students, advocating for transparency and accountability in the evaluation process.

Calls for Investigation

In the halls of power, opposition leaders rallied behind the banner of accountability, demanding a Supreme Court-monitored probe into the labyrinth of irregularities shrouding the NEET-UG 2024 results. Mallikarjun Kharge and Jairam Ramesh emerged as staunch advocates for justice, echoing the sentiments of aggrieved students and demanding swift action to rectify the systemic flaws plaguing the examination system.

Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu chief minister M K Stalin reiterated his state's long-standing opposition to the NEET exam, citing concerns about social justice and federalism, thereby adding a regional dimension to the broader discourse surrounding the controversy.

The controversy surrounding the NEET-UG 2024 results has raised serious questions about the integrity of the examination process. With allegations of paper leaks, discrepancies in scores, and political outcry, there is a pressing need for a thorough investigation to ensure fairness and transparency for all candidates.

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