HC calls the bluff of a student who secured MBBS admission by claiming to have scored 594 marks in NEET

Justice C.V. Karthikeyan orders termination of the studies of K.S. Manoj, pursuing his third year medical course at Tirunelveli Government Medical College after finding out that he has scored only 248 marks

March 05, 2023 12:58 am | Updated 12:58 am IST

The Madras High Court has called the bluff of a student who had secured admission to MBBS course in a government medical college in 2020 by claiming to have scored 594 out of 720 marks in National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET), even though his score was only 248 as per National Testing Agency (NTA) records. Justice C.V. Karthikeyan on Friday dismissed the student’s writ petition pending in the court since 2020 and ordered termination of his third-year MBBS studies, which he had been pursuing on the basis of interim orders passed by the court in 2020. Then, another single judge had allowed him to get admitted until the completion of an inquiry.

On being finally satisfied that there was only one Optical Mark Recognition (OMR) sheet with respect to the writ petitioner K.S. Manoj of Coimbatore and that he had scored only 248 marks in NEET, Justice Karthikeyan said the court would have to necessarily interfere with his ongoing studies at the Government Medical College in Tirunelveli.

Initially, when the student approached the court in 2020 with a screenshot to claim that his marks on the NTA website were shown as 594 for a few days until they got replaced with 248, the High Court had permitted him to participate in the counselling on the basis of higher marks and get admitted to the MBBS course.

The single judge also ordered a Crime Branch-Criminal Investigation Department (CB-CID) probe the issue. However, a Division Bench of the High Court stayed the order for a CB-CID probe and it was also confirmed by the Supreme Court with a direction to the single judge of the High Court to dispose of the writ petition at the earliest.

Subsequently, the High Court summoned the student to the court to identify his signatures on the attendance sheet and the OMR sheet. The petitioner appeared before the court on November 22, 2022, and claimed that the signatures found in the OMR sheet were not that of his even though the signature on the attendance sheet were genuine. After recording his submission, the court sent both the sheets to a Central Forensic Sciences Laboratory to compare the signatures of the student and the invigilators. The laboratory submitted a report on December 14, 2022, confirming that the signatures found in both the documents were of the same person.

Relying upon the forensics report and other materials, including a communication from the examination centre that the student had submitted only one OMR sheet on the day of exam and the elaborate steps taken by NTA for safekeeping of OMR sheets, the judge concluded that the petitioner had scored only 248 marks in NEET-2020.

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