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Why So Many NEET-UG Toppers? Exam Body’s Reply To Big Question In Top Court


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The Supreme Court is hearing the NEET-UG paper leak case that has sparked protests

New Delhi:

In its reply to the Supreme Court’s questions on alleged irregularities surrounding the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET), the National Testing Agency (NTA) has answered a key question: why so many toppers this time. 

As many as 67 students scored the perfect score of 720/720 in the all-India exam for medical education aspirants. The jump in the number of toppers fuelled the doubts surrounding the exams, especially since six of them were from the same centre in Haryana’s Jhajjar.

The NTA’s affidavit filed before the top court says that the six students at the Jhajjar centre scored 720 after they were awarded grace marks for loss of time. But in the retest on May 23, they could not score full marks. So, the number of students with 720/720 stands at 61.

The testing agency then said that 17 candidates out of these 61 had scored full marks on provisional answer keys. The remaining 44 got a perfect score after revision in an Answer Key of Physics. “During the Answer Key Challenge period, ie, from 29.05.2024 to 01.06.2024, NTA received 13.373 challenges to the provisional answer key of one question in Physics. Due to the differences in the old and new editions of the NCERT textbook, the Subject Expert(s) held that two options may be taken as correct in place of one option for this Question…,” NTA said.

Therefore, the agency said, the actual number of candidates who scored 720/720 without any revision in answer keys is 17, “which is not significantly higher in number than previous years”.

“It is further relevant to mention that the 17 candidates who scored 720/720 based on the provisional answer keys are distributed to 16 centres located in 15 cities. Similarly, 61 candidates who scored 720/720 marks on final answer keys are distributed across 58 centres located in 41 cities across the country,” the NTA said in its affidavit.

The testing agency also said that the petitioner’s allegation that the number of students scoring high marks are from certain centres is “completely unsubstantiated”.

“In this regard, the Result of top 100 candidates was analysed and it has been reported that they are distributed across 95 centres located in 56 cities within 18 States/UTs of the country. This diverse distribution highlights the widespread participation and competitive spirit among students from different regions and educational backgrounds,” the NTA has said.



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