New Delhi: Days after reduction of the qualifying percentile for postgraduate courses in the NEET-PG 2023 examination to 'zero,' a petition before the Delhi High Court has been filed by several doctor candidates protesting against the notification.
Justice Purushaindra Kumar Kaurav has issued a notice in response to the petition by three MBBS doctors who took the NEET-PG exam on March 5 and were engaged in the counselling process.
They have challenged a notification issued by the Centre on September 20 that lowered the qualifying percentile for the examination to 'zero,' which equates to minus 40 marks across all categories.
The judge has sought responses from the Union government through the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the National Board of Examination, and the Medical Counselling Committee.
The plea argues that by reducing the eligibility criteria to zero percentile, i.e., minus 40 marks, the very purpose of conducting the NEET PG exam stands defeated.
It also fades away the entire purpose of a 'National Eligibility cum Entrance test' if the quotient of eligibility itself is diluted, the plea says.
The petitioners claim that they submitted a representation to the Union Ministry seeking clarification on the impugned order and requesting its withdrawal, but they received no response.
The plea further states that "the Impugned Order is prejudicial to the candidates who had opted out of the second round of the counselling process as it seeks to operate in retrospect. Candidates had opted out of the Second Round hoping for a better seat in the Mop-Up round that used to be held each year. However, the conversion of seats in the proposed Third round is different and substantially less than the erstwhile Mop-Up Round. As such, the Impugned Order has vitiated the calculated approach of candidates in hindsight."
On Monday, even the Supreme Court had dismissed a PIL by a lawyer challenging the Centre's decision.
A bench comprising Chief Justice of India D.Y. Chandrachud, Justice Manoj Misra and Justice J.B. Pardiwala said:"What can a lawyer know about the cut-off for NEET-PG?, "You are not an aspirant. How are you affected?"
To which, the lawyer said that the decision will affect the quality of medical services.
The bench, however, refused to entertain the matter observing that the petitioner has no locus standi to challenge the decision. The PIL was then dismissed.