SC rejects petition alleging error in Physics NEET paper in Hindi


ByAbraham Thomas, New Delhi

The Supreme Court on Tuesday ended speculation over an alleged error in the Hindi translation of the NEET-UG 2021 physics paper as a committee of experts on the subject, upon re-assessment, ruled out any fault.

A bench of justices Dhananjaya Y Chandrachud, AS Bopanna and Vikram Nath said, “It would be beyond the remit of this Court to conduct an exercise of re-assessing the correctness of the solutions. The national testing agency (NTA), which is the agency entrusted with the duty of conducting the NEET (UG) 2021 examination, while responding to the apprehensions of the students, had the matter scrutinized again by three subject experts. Hence, it would not be open to this Court to substitute its own view.”

The Court was dealing with a petition filed by 22 MBBS aspirants who informed the Court about an error in the question 2 of Section A-15 (physics) in the question paper bearing code P-2. Although NTA had assessed the question and found it to be correct, the bench had directed the NTA to hold a re-assessment.

On Tuesday, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appeared for NTA and presented the findings of the three-member expert committee drawn from the faculty of IIT-Guwahati, Delhi technological university and national physics laboratory. The experts said that in the Hindi translation, the work used was the same as ‘amplitude’ in the English translation and this was reflected in the circuit diagram given along with the question.

Advocate Archana Pathak Dave who represented the students said that the decision would affect nearly 0.2 million students who attempted the Hindi translation out of a total of 1.5 million students who appeared for Neet-UG 2021. She referred to the class XII physics textbook to show that the correct definition of amplitude was not mentioned in the question due to which students lost marks as there is negative marking for a wrong answer.

The bench said, “You have made an earnest endeavour to persuade the court…we could have done something had it been a law paper, but not physics. That is not our remit.”

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