The Delhi High Court took two important decisions regarding NEET Undergraduate Examinations. In one decision High Court allowed open school students to appear for the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) examination. This move by the High Court strikes down CBSE’s clause that barred students from open schools or those who have studied privately from appearing in NEET.

In another decision along with this, the HC has also dismissed a plea that was filed challenging the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE)’s notification that stated the age restrictions for medical aspirants. With this order, the age restriction stated in the notification will remain unchanged. According to this, the upper age limit of 25 and 30 yrs for general and reserved categories respectively fixed by the board will stay put.

The High Court back in February 2018 had stayed the CBSE’s notification on upper age limit and other criteria for NEET. The plea challenging the Medical Council of India’s decision to set an upper age limit of 25 years and 30 years for the reserved category along with disabled candidates was filed by two MBBS aspirants hailing from Kerala.

The Union government back in 2017, had introduced the upper age limit for medical examinations which had led to massive protests by medical aspirants in the country. It was when several petitions were filed in the court, that the apex court had allowed students above 25 years to sit for the exam.

The plea file in the High Court stated that the decision taken was against the Supreme Court direction which stated that there should not be any age limit for MBBS aspirants appearing for NEET. However, the same criteria for eligibility were introduced this year too. According to the eligibility criteria introduced, the students who have had biology as an additional subject, those who have taken more than two years to complete their 11th and 12th and students who have studied privately were not eligible to apply for the exam.

The Delhi High Court on Friday dismissed petitions challenging the Central Board of Secondary Education’s notification that laid down upper age limits for candidates appear for the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test, PTI reported. The court said candidates from general category above 25 years cannot appear for the exam while candidates from reserved categories older than 30 are ineligible.

Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Chander Shekhar, however, struck down a clause in the notification that bars students from open schools or those who have studied privately from appearing in the examination, The Times of India reported.

“Students or candidates, who have done class 12 from NIOS or recognized open school state boards, would not be treated as per se disqualified for selection and appearance in NEET,” the court said in its 81-page judgment, referring to the National Institute of Open Schooling. “Their NEET results, when otherwise eligible, would be declared with other candidates.”

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