Kerala Kaumudi Online
Wednesday, 02 December 2020 11.18 AM IST

NEET, JEE exams to go ahead as planned, SC rejects review plea by 6 opposition-ruled states


NEW DELHI: The Joint Entrance Exam (JEE) and the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) will go ahead on the dates allotted as scheduled as a three-judge bench of the Supreme Court on Friday rejected a review petition seeking the postponement of exams. The petition was filed by ministers of six opposition-ruled states against the court's August 17 order allowing the National Test Agency (NTA) to hold NEET and JEE exams in September, amid nationwide opposition from students. Justices Ashok Bhushan, BR Gavai and Krishna Murari held the in-chamber hearing at 1:30pm today.

JEE Main exam for over 8 lakh engineering aspirants had started on September 1. The National Eligibility cum Entrance Test Undergraduate, or NEET 2020, will be held on September 13. The apex court, in its judgement, had upheld the Centre's decision to hold the competitive examinations and said, "A crucial year of students cannot be wasted and life has to go on" while dismissing the students’ pleas for postponement. The ministers of six non-BJP-ruled states had said that the Supreme Court's order failed to secure students' "right to life" and ignored "teething logistical difficulties" to be faced in conducting the exams during the coronavirus pandemic.

The review plea was filed by ministers from West Bengal (Moloy Ghatak), Jharkhand (Rameshwar Oraon), Rajasthan (Raghu Sharma), Chhattisgarh (Amarjeet Bhagat), Punjab (BS Sidhu) and Maharashtra (Uday Ravindra Sawant).

The petition said as per the NTA, approximately 9.53 lakh and 15.97 lakh students have registered for JEE (Main) and NEET (UG), respectively. The plea said JEE Mains is slated to be conducted over 660 exam centres with 9.53 lakhs students appearing for it, roughly 1,443 students per centre. Similarly for NEET UG, 15.97 lakhs students will appear in 3,843 centres across the country, nearly 415 students per centre, it said.

Meanwhile, in data released yesterday, the Education Ministry revealed that out of the total 458,521 students who had registered to sit for the Joint Entrance Exam (JEE)-Mains for admission to engineering colleges, at least 114,563 students dropped out from appearing in the first three days.

The dropout number — approximate 25 per cent — takes the spotlight back on the demand for a change in exam dates due to the ranging Covid-19 pandemic. Only 343,958 went to give the exams on the first three days. About 54.67 per cent aspirants gave the exam on day one, 81 per cent gave it on day two and day three say an attendance of 82 per cent.

The National Testing Agency (NTA), which conducts both exams, is holding JEE Main Exams from September 1 to September 6, while NEET will be held on September 13.

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