NEET-UG Paper Leak Case: SCt told the NTA and Union, “Even if there is 0.001% negligence on the part of anyone, it should be thoroughly dealt with.”

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Today (June 18, 2024), the Supreme Court (SC) of India was hearing a similar writ petition related to the controversial grace marks given to the candidates in the NEET-UG (National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test-Under Graduate) 2024 exams. The SC vacation bench constituting Justice Vikram Nath and Justice SVN Bhatti told the Union Government and the NTA (National Testing Agency) that even 0.001% negligence in conducting the NEET-UG exams should be considered seriously. It said, “Even if there is 0.001% negligence on the part of anyone, it should be thoroughly dealt with. All these matters ought not to be treated as adversarial litigation.” The bench added, “Imagine a situation where a person who has played fraud on the system, has become a doctor, he is more deleterious towards society....we all know the labor the children undergo especially for preparing for these exams.” While listing the matter for further hearing on July 08, 2024, along with other petitions, the bench also said that if the NTA makes a mistake, it should act proactively and admit the same. Justice Bhatti said, “Your stance (the NTA and Union) ought not to change the moment you enter the court, representing the Agency which is responsible for conducting the examination. You must stand firm- if there is a mistake, yes there is a mistake, this is the action we will take- at least that inspires confidence in your performance....if someone keeps just a table in front of him, find out the performance of most of the candidates, one can easily understand where it has gone wrong, how many cell phones were used...clearly we react, but in vacation, we react slowly.” Following, Justice Nath said, “We need timely action from you (NTA).” Therefore, the bench issued notice and directed the Centre and the NTA to submit responses within 2 weeks and listed the matter for hearing, along with related petitions, on July 08.