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SC notice to NTA, MCI on plea on NEET-UG exam centre in Gulf countries

shish Tripathi
Last Updated : 29 July 2020, 08:44 IST
Last Updated : 29 July 2020, 08:44 IST
Last Updated : 29 July 2020, 08:44 IST
Last Updated : 29 July 2020, 08:44 IST

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The Supreme Court on Wednesday sought a response from the Union government, the National Testing Agency (NTA) and the Medical Council of India (MCI) on a plea to conduct NEET-UG 2020 examinations in centres across the Middle East and other gulf countries.

A bench of Justices L Nageswara Rao, Hemant Gupta and S Ravindra Bhat issued notice to the government and other authorities on a petition by Abdul Azeez.

He questioned the validity of the Kerala High Court's order of June 30, that dismissed the plea. The petitioner said the students studying abroad would be adversely affected by the decision.

The central government's decision to conduct the NEET-UG 2020 examination on September 13 amidst the Covid-19 pandemic was a risky decision. The NTA, which provided examination centres abroad for the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) for engineering courses, ought to provide centres for conducting NEET-UG 2020 as well, his plea stated.

The refusal to allow examination centres abroad for NEET-UG 2020 was "arbitrary" and would cause "severe mental stress" to students preparing for it for years, the plea contended.

The High Court had said the NTA and MCI, being expert bodies, could only decide about the matter and it could not issue any such direction in view of Covid-19 pandemic.

In a special leave petition, the petitioner contended the right of students to education was being jeopardised by the state action as they were being unfairly discriminated only on the ground that they had studied abroad.

The plea said the High Court should have considered the future of the students in light of the current extraordinary situation and directed the NTA or the MCI to sanction exam centres in the Middle East and other Gulf countries.

It also claimed that the High Court erred in not setting aside the decision of the NTA and the MCI to conduct NEET-UG until the normalcy was restored.

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Published 29 July 2020, 08:33 IST

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