The National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) was held on Sunday across the country amid stringent checks and protocols in view of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Based on random sampling, the National Testing Agency (NTA) said that the attendance for the exam was between 85-90 per cent. However, the official attendance figures were not available yet. The attendance in 2019 was 92.9 per cent.
The candidates who missed the exams after testing positive for COVID-19 will get another opportunity to sit for the test, the date for which will be announced later.
Union Education Minister Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank also tweeted that around 90% students appeared for the exam. "NTA informed me that around 85-90% students appeared in #NEET exam today. I sincerely thank all Chief Ministers and @DG_NTA for proper arrangements made to facilitate student participation. #NEET participation reflects the tenacity and grit of young #AtmaNirbharBharat."
Medical entrance exam NEET began on Sunday amid strict precautions in view of the COVID-19 pandemic at over 3,800 centres across the country with students queuing up as per their designated time slots, adhering to social distancing norms The National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) began at 2 pm, but entry to centres started at 11 am. Students were allotted different slots for entry to ensure there is staggered movement and social distancing is maintained.
Over 15 lakh candidates have registered for NEET, which was earlier postponed twice in view of the pandemic.
Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' wished luck to the candidates appearing for the exam and assured that arrangements are in place for their safety.
"I wish luck to candidates appearing for NEET today. I am confident that students will appear for the exam with confidence and follow all guidelines. All states have made required arrangements to ensure hygiene and safety of students as per guidelines," he tweeted.
The exam has been postponed twice due to the pandemic and the government decided to go ahead with the exams, despite opposition, to mitigate any further academic loss.
The National Testing Agency (NTA) has set in place strict standard operating procedures (SOPs) in view of the pandemic, including measures like reducing the number of candidates per room from the earlier 24 to 12.
The NTA has also increased the number of centres from 2,546 in 2019 to 3,862 this year to ensure crowd management and staggered entry and exit protocols. Unlike the engineering entrance (JEE), NEET-UG, the medical admission test, is a pen and paper exam and held once a year.
Accordingly, the NTA has changed centres for a few candidates this week in compliance with social distancing norms and COVID restrictions.