Maha: NEET aspirants allegedly asked to remove hijab; approach cops

Washim: Some Muslim girls have claimed they were made to remove their burkha and hijab when they reached an examination centre to appear for the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (UG) in Maharashtra Washim district, police said on Monday.

Some aggrieved parents have complained to the police and a probe was underway, a police official said, adding that at least two Muslim girls have approached the police.

“The NEET (Undergraduate) exam was held at six centres in Washim on Sunday. This incident of two girls being asked to remove their burkha and hijab (face veil) allegedly happened in Matoshree Shantabai Gote College. Their application to the police claims that the staff involved in checking students made objectionable remarks like threatening to cut the burkha-hijab if they didn’t remove it voluntarily,” he said citing the complaints.

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One aggrieved student told reporters the concerned college authorities first allowed them on the premises for the exam and then later told them to remove their hijab and burkhas outside, adding that staff also entered into arguments with them.

“We asked them to check us and then allow us in, but the concerned staff spoke to us disrespectfully and their behaviour was not good,” one of the students alleged.

The parent of one of the students, who allegedly faced the ordeal, said they had filed a complaint with the Washim City police station and wanted action to be taken to against the college for acting in an “arbitrary” manner.

Inspector Rafiq Shaikh of Washim City police station is investigating the matter, a senior official said.

A record 18,72,329 students had registered for the NNET (UG) held by the National Testing Agency, with 95 per cent of them attending it at 3,570 centres in 497 cities across the country on Sunday, officials said.

NEET-UG is the qualifying entrance exam for admission to Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS), Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS), Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery (BAMS), Bachelor of Siddha Medicine and Surgery (BSMS), Bachelor of Unani Medicine and Surgery (BUMS), and Bachelor of Homeopathic Medicine and Surgery (BHMS) and BSc(H) Nursing courses.

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