New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday issued notice to the National Board of Examination (NBE) and others, on a plea against the last-minute changes to the syllabus for the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) PG Super Speciality exam 2021 (NEET SS 2021).
A bench of Justices D.Y. Chandrachud and B.V. Nagarathna issued notice to the NBE, the National Medical Commission and Centre, and scheduled the matter for further hearing on Monday next week.
The top court was hearing a plea by Prateek Rastogi and 40 postgraduate qualified doctors, who challenged the abrupt last-minute changes contending it was done to favour general medicine candidates.
Senior advocate Shyam Divan, representing the petitioners, contended before the bench that notification for the examination, scheduled to be held on November 13-14 this year, was issued on July 23. However, on August 31, another notification was issued changing the syllabus of the exam, which has put the candidates in a great disadvantage due to paucity of time for preparations.
It was argued that as per the prevailing pattern, from 2018 to 2020, 60 per cent marks were allotted from question in the super speciality, while 40 percent were distributed for questions from feeder courses.
However, it was claimed that as per the proposed pattern, the entirety of questions for the critical care super speciality will be drawn from general medicine, which would leave candidates from other disciplines in a tight spot.
“There was no hint that there is going to be any change in pattern,” said Divan.
The plea, filed through advocate Javedur Rahman, contended that aspirants have all along been preparing in terms of the pattern that has been in place for the last three years. The plea further added that on earlier occasions, when changes in the pattern/scheme were proposed to be made, the changed pattern/scheme was made public almost six months prior to the exam.
After hearing the arguments in the matter, the bench noted: “It is stated that new pattern will have 100 per cent questions from area of general medicine which would be advantageous for the students who are in general medicine.”