The Madras High Court today asked CBSE to grant 196 marks -- 4 marks each for 49 erroneous questions in the Tamil version of this year's NEET, the national level medical entrance test -- to those who took the exam for medical admissions in the regional language. The court also said the students who took the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) for admission to the medical and dental colleges in Tamil should be suitably compensated to provide a level-playing ground. Tamil Nadu was among the states withlowest passing percentage in NEET 2018.
Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) conducted NEET 2018 examination at 2255 centres in 136 cities across the country on May 6 and the results were released on June 4. CBSE was recently relieved of its duty of conducting the NEET exam after the announcement of National Testing Agency (NTA).
196 Marks For 49 Erroneous Tamil Questions In NEET 2018: 10 Facts
1. A public interest litigation was filed by senior CPI-M leader T K Rangarajan sought full marks for the 49 questions, saying key words in the Tamil questions were wrongly translated from English and this caused confusion for the students. "We found both the questions as well their answers wrong," Shaji Chellam, counsel for petitioner told NDTV, citing an instance where "Cheetah was translated as Seetha in Tamil".
2. Passing the orders on the PIL, Justices C T Selvam and A M Basheer Ahamed of the Madurai Bench directed the CBSE to consequently revise the list of eligible candidates and publish it afresh. The CBSE is expected to issue a revised ranking list in two weeks and counselling for medical course - which was already on in the state -- will be suspended till then.
3. The court ruling would also have ramifications for students across the country as the rankings could be drastically altered.
4. "The Board is yet to receive the court order. We won't be able to comment on this issue right now," a board official replied when NDTV asked about the revised NEET rank list.
5. Referring to CBSE's submission that the decision on most appropriate answer was taken by experts and marks were awarded based on that, the bench wondered whether the board entrusted with the conduct of such a national-level examination could be so uncertain about the answers for the questions raised by it.
6. According to the court, giving marks for the most appropriate answer, might be acceptable for civil service examination, but to do it in respect of the NEET examination for students aged 17-18 should not have been thought of. The level of difficulty should not be raised to such a level for the teenagers, the bench said in its order.
7. The board was asked to explain whether it has started any exercise to list English words in science subjects that do not have a proper Tamil equivalent. The judges had however said the mistakes in the question paper were not just a case of ambiguity.
8. In its observations, the court said the Central Board was being "autocratic" about the errors.
9. The judges also asked why the private plus two students were not eligible to take the NEET examination. Many students had to work at home to help their parents, they said.
10. NEET 2018 we held in 11 languages including Tamil and 24,720 candidates had registered to attend the exam in Tamil. Out of the total 13,26,725 registered candidates in NEET, 1,20,000 candidates were from Tamil Nadu. In Tamil Nadu, about 1.07 lakh candidates took the test across 170 centres in 10 cities. Source