New Delhi, July 29 : The Supreme Court on Wednesday queried the Medical Council of India (MCI) why it couldn’t conduct the NEET-UG (National Eligibility cum Entrance Test-Undergraduate) online and asked it to respond to a petition, filed by parents of over 4,000 NEET candidates in the Middle East, seeking direction either to postpone the examination or allocate centres in those countries due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The apex court Bench, comprising Justices L. Nageswara Rao, Hemant Gupta and S. Ravindra Bhat, issued the notice on the plea filed by parents settled in the Middle East.
The petitioners have challenged the Kerala High Court order dismissing their plea that the court can’t issue directions to expert bodies, like the MCI and the National Testing Agency (NTA).
According to the plea, nearly 4,000 students have registered for the NEET-UG from Qatar and other Middle-East countries and they are facing various procedural issues in getting affidavits attested by the Indian embassy due to the pandemic. After the attestation, the documents are supposed to be sent to India.
Also, students couldn’t get seats on the flights scheduled under the Vande Bharat Mission, because they were aimed at flying the people in distress and medical emergencies, migrant labourers, and also students stranded in various universities abroad.
In the Kerala High Court, the MCI had submitted that overseas test centres were not feasible.
The petitioners have urged directions to the government either to allocate NEET examination centres in Qatar and other Middle East countries, or postpone it until the situation gets back to normal.