Opposition Ministers seek review of SC’s decision on NEET, JEE

New Delhi: Ministers from six Opposition-ruled States have moved the Supreme Court seeking a review of its August 17 order, in which the Central government was permitted to conduct the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) and Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) in September 2020.

The petition has been moved by Ministers from West Bengal, Jharkhand, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Punjab and Maharashtra through lawyer Sunil Fernandes.

While the main petitioner is West Bengal Labour Minister Moloy Ghatak, other petitioners include Jharkhand Finance Minister Dr Rameshwar Oraon, Rajasthan Health Minister Dr Raghu Sharma, Chhattisgarh Planning Minister Amarjeet Bhagat, Punjab Heath Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu and Maharashtra Higher and Technical Education Minister Uday Ravindra Samant.

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Several parties had opposed holding the NEET and JEE exams amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and consulted on approaching the Supreme Court against its verdict. Notably, several protests were also held against conducting the exams.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had earlier this week said that opposition ruled states such as Maharashtra, Punjab, West Bengal, Jharkhand should collectively approach the Supreme Court for deferring NEET, JEE Main exams to be held next month.

The Supreme Court had on August 17 dismissed a petition seeking the postponement of the NEET and JEE exam scheduled to be held in September 2020 observing that the career of students cannot be put under jeopardy for long.

The National Testing Agency, during the hearing, had submitted that all safeguards will be taken while holding the exam.

The petition, which was filed by eleven students from eleven states, had contended that the decision to hold the JEE and NEET UG-2020 exams in September across India was arbitrary, whimsical and violative of the fundamental right to life of lakhs of affected students.

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