Set common questions for NEET in regional languages: SC tells CBSE
The Supreme Court on Thursday pulled up the CBSE for setting different question papers for students taking the NEET in regional languages.education Updated: Aug 11, 2017 11:25 IST
The Supreme Court on Thursday pulled up the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) for setting different question papers for students taking the National Eligibility-Cum-Entrance Test (NEET) in regional languages and said there should be a common paper for all aspirants.
A bench headed by justice Dipak Misra also asked the education board to set out steps in its affidavit to carry out the NEET - common entrance test for admission into medical and dental courses - in the future while ensuring that the difficulty level in the questions is maintained.
“The main paper can be in English and questions can be translated into regional languages,” the bench told the CBSE lawyer and additional solicitor general, Maninder Singh.
The three-judge bench was hearing a petition filed by NGO Sankalp Charitable Trust on whose plea the top court had last year ruled that NEET would be the single-window exam to admit students in all medical and dental colleges across the country.
Petitioner’s lawyer senior advocate Indira Jaising said the standard of question papers in English and regional languages were different. She cited data and ratio between the number of students who took NEET in English and Hindi and equivalent ratio with respect to the students who qualified in support of her submission.
Jaising argued questions in regional languages were not identical to the questions in Hindi and English and there was a difference in the level of difficulty.
Singh admitted the discrepancy but said the difficulty level was the same. “As long as the difficulty level is the same, it passes the test of uniformity,” Singh told the bench.
The Medical Council of India (MCI) informed the top court that questions were first prepared in English and then translated into Hindi. Since experts were not available to translate questions, different questions with similar difficulty level were set.
The court listed the matter for a hearing on October 10.
Nearly 12 lakh candidates across India appeared for the NEET on May 7 in 10 languages including English, Hindi and others.
Many students, who took the exam, earlier approached the court, saying the questions set for them in regional languages were tougher compared to the ones set for candidates writing the exam in Hindi and English.
The top court declined to “nullify” NEET on July 15, saying it would affect over six lakh candidates who cleared the test.