1.20 lakh students take NEET (UG) in Kerala; hiccups at three centres

Applicants waiting outside an examination centre to appear in the NEET-UG exam in Kochi on Sunday. Photo: PTI/ A S Satheesh

New Delhi/Thiruvananthapuram: This year’s National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test for admissions to undergraduate medical courses in India took place at all scheduled centres, except Manipur, on May 7. In Kerala, 1.28 lakh students had registered for the test and 1.20 lakh of them attended.

According to academic experts, there were only very few extremely difficult questions this year. Most of the questions were of a reasonable standard which did not trouble a majority of students, they added.

At the national-level, 20.8 lakh candidates had registered for the test, which is an all-time record. NEET (UG) selects candidates to fill the 1.4 lakh MBBS and BDS seats in the country.

In Manipur, the test was not held following riots. Around 8,700 students had registered in the state and they were supposed to appear for NEET (UG) at 22 centres. Another test will be conducted for them when peace is restored.

Late finish at one centre

Hiccups were reported from various centres, including in Kerala, during the conduct of the test. One such incident took place at Mar Baselios English Medium School in Engapuzha, Kozhikode, where the test ended at 7.20 pm, instead of the scheduled time of 5.20 pm, owing to shortage of question papers.

At this centre, the shortage was noticed when the question paper bundles were opened at 1.25 pm, before the scheduled start of the test at 2 pm. Subsequently, the necessary question papers were brought from other centres where students were absent, causing a delay in starting the test. As a result, the test commenced at various times in different rooms at this centre. In fact, there were 20 classrooms at the centre and the test started at 2.05 pm in class numbers 4-20. In class numbers 2 and 3, there was a delay of 30 minutes. In class number 1, the test started only by 3.25 pm and was over by 7.20 pm. In this room, 40 students took NEET (UG).

Meanwhile, at Al-Farook Residential School, Feroke, there was a dispute over distribution of a different OMR sheet.

Similarly, two students could not take the test in Alappuzha after they were allotted a non-existing centre. In the hall ticket of the two students – both female candidates belonging to Chengannur – the exam centre was marked as Government Girls School, Cherthala. However, this school was not an exam centre. These students approached two other centres which were nearest to this school, but their details were not available and they could not write the test.

Yet another issue was reported from Sree Narayana Public School at Channanikkad in Kottayam district where the start of the test was delayed owing to malfunctioning of the biometric punching system. Of the 480 students who were allotted this centre, 140 could not carry out their punching before the test, leading to arguments between their parents and school authorities.

The test started only after 2 pm, said students. The biometric details of the 140 students were registered after the test.

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