The Delhi High Court has directed the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) to file, in a sealed cover, a report on the correctness of the answers of two questions that had featured in the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test, 2017 (NEET-UG). The matter will now be heard on 8 August.
The order was issued on a Petition filed by Ms. Urvashi Khanna, a Kanpur student who had appeared for NEET-UG, 2017. Ms. Khanna has demanded that the result of NEET-UG, 2017 be quashed and re-announced as per the correct Answer Key. She has also sought an interim stay on the process of counselling and allotment, which is to be conducted on the basis of the result.
She has alleged that the CBSE had failed to identify and mark the correct answers in the Answer Key issued by it for the examination. Answers of four questions—Question No. 58 (Biology), 68 (Biology), 105 (Chemistry) and 140 (Physics)—are alleged to be wrongly mentioned in the Answer Key. Out of these, a mark for one of the questions has already been given to all the candidates, after the same was accepted to be wrong by the authorities.
Advocate MR Shamshad, who appeared for the petitioner informed the Court that she had attempted to inform the Board about the impugned answers through the mechanism notified by them, but she could not upload scanned pages of books containing the correct answers due to technical glitches. An email addressed to the authorities had also been met by an automated reply stating that the time to challenge the Answer Key had lapsed.
Ms. Khanna has, therefore, approached the Court, contending that her rank would be substantially affected if the impugned answers were declared wrong. This was also due to the fact that she would not only get the advantage of the additional marks, but would also be spared of the negative marking awarded on the impugned answers. She has, hence, contended that this is a violation of Article 14 of the Constitution of India, as “the less meritorious candidates were able to secure better rank in the merit list”.
“… there was no negligence or laxity on the part of the petitioner in approaching the authorities and she is made to suffer despite of a prompt and pro-active action taken by her. Consequently the rank of the Petitioner has come down, which has let to serious violation of the Constitutional rights of the Petitioner to claim the admission in the best available college of her choice, according to the marks based on fair examination system,” Ms. Khanna goes on to contend, demanding that the results be quashed.
Read the Petition here