News Brief

NEET 2024 Controversy — Record 67 Candidates Score Full Marks, 8 From The Same Haryana Exam Centre

Swarajya Staff

Jun 07, 2024, 06:05 PM | Updated 06:02 PM IST

Image for Representational Purpose (Sanjeev Verma/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)
Image for Representational Purpose (Sanjeev Verma/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

The National Testing Agency’s (NTA's) ability to conduct entrance examinations is under scanner after 67 candidates scored full marks in the recently conducted National Eligibility Cum Entrance Test (NEET) for admission to undergraduate medical science courses.

The results were declared by the NTA on 4 June, the same day when Lok Sabha election results were declared.

As per reports, not only have these candidates scored a perfect 720 score in their exams, at least eight of them are said to have attempted the exam from the same exam centre located in Jhajjar, Haryana. This apart, the number of students scoring above 700 too is also said to have increased this time.

Notably, the 2024 session of NEET has been mired in controversy since the start after reports of nearly 20 students in Patna having received question papers a day before the exam.

After several clarifications sought by the students regarding the suspected anomalies in the results, NTA said that it had awarded grace marks to candidates to compensate for the time lost in certain exam centres.

This loss of time is supposed to have been a result of confusion between the invigilators as well as the students as to whether the latter were supposed to attempt both question paper booklets provided by the agency.

“Out of the 67 candidates who got 720/720 marks, 44 were able to score full marks on account of the revision in one answer key of Physics and six students were able to score the same due to compensatory marks awarded to them on account of loss of time,” the testing agency in a statement released on 6 June said.

“The loss of examination time at certain exam centres was ascertained by a committee of experts. Students were compensated on the basis of their answering efficiency and the time lost as per the mechanism/formula established by the Honourable High Court vide its 2018 judgement,” NTA added.

According to the testing agency, 1,563 candidates were compensated for the loss of time and that the revised score of such candidates varied from -20 to 720.

However, students as well as several coaching institute operators are in no mood to accept NTA’s statements.

“There is still no clarity as to how the NTA gave those grace marks. While the agency issued a press release, they have not provided the judgement on which they have relied for awarding those compensatory marks. Moreover, the NTA is silent on the difference between the marks calculated through the response sheet and that which has been given on the score card,” Alakh Pandey, founder of Physicswallah, a coaching institute chain that provides coaching to medical as well as engineering entrance examinations, said in an interview to NDTV India.

Pandey further pointed out instances of how he had come across students from some of his coaching centres where the score calculated according to their responses released by the NTA and the actual score displayed in the result differed by as much as 50-60 marks. 

As per the marking scheme for the examination, an aspirant is expected to answer a total of 180 questions. For each correct answer, the candidate is awarded four marks while for every wrong answer, one mark is deducted. In the 2024 session, 23,33,297 students are said to have appeared for the exam.

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