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Fly applicants from abroad in Vande Bharat flights to appear for NEET exams: SC tells Centre

The court said that it cannot pass directions on relaxing quarantine conditions, but asked the state governments to consider the issue.

SNS | New Delhi |

Amid the rising demands for the cancellation or postponement of the NEET exams for Undergraduate Medical courses, the Supreme Court on Monday said that the government should accommodate those students who are in abroad in the Vande Bharat flights for appearing in the exams.

The court was hearing a plea filed by parents and students living abroad for setting up overseas centres for the examination.

Like JEE, which has exam centres abroad, NEET should also have centres as the students cannot come to India to write the examinations, the petitioners had argued.

The apex court further suggested the Medical Council of India – the body responsible for conducting NEET exams – to conduct the exams online from next year.

“If the Joint Entrance Exam can be held online then you should consider NEET also to be held in an online form from next year,” the court said.

During the hearing, the court told Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who was representing the Centre to communicate to the concerned ministries that these people may be allowed to come back for the exams.

Mehta said it can be done “subject to quarantine requirements and establishing that they are coming for exam purpose.”

On this, the apex court said that it cannot pass directions on relaxing quarantine conditions, but asked the state governments to consider the issue.

The NEET (UG) exams are scheduled to be held on September 13.

A petition filed by one Abdul Azeez, a social worker situated in Middle East who was pursuing the interest of NEET students.

He urged the apex court to either allow the exams online or provide centre in Qatar and other Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries.

The National Testing Authority (NTA) and Medical Council of India (MCI) had opposed the request by the petitioner.