JEE Main, NEET 2020: Supreme Court To Hear Review Petition Seeking Postponement Of Exam Today

The Supreme Court of India will hear a review plea filed by the cabinet ministers of six opposition ruled states to review its August 17 order allowing conducting of the NEET (National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test) and JEE (Joint Entrance Examination) amid COVID-19 pandemic. In the latest move, a review petition was filed on August 31 after the National Testing Agency (NTA) refused to postponed the JEE Main and NEET examinations any further, in accordance with Supreme Court's order.

The plea has been filed by six Cabinet Ministers from the States of West Bengal, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, Punjab and Maharashtra.

While the plea will be heard today, the JEE Main exams have already started across the country from September 1. National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET 2020) is set to be held on September 13.

The matter will be heard by the Bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan, BR Gavai and Krishna Murari.

As India records over 3.31 million COVID-19 cases, the plea mentions that 25 lakh students will cumulatively appear for the two exams, risking their safety and life.

The plea, filed through advocate Sunil Fernandes, highlights that, with JEE being conducted in over 660 exam centres across the country for over 8 lakh students, roughly 1,443 students are appearing in the exam per JEE centre.

The petitioners have asserted that while the government had sufficient time to ensure the safe conduct of the JEE and NEET examinations, "the intervening months from April to September 2020 were characterised by inaction, confusion, lethargy and inertia.”

Referring to the Supreme Court's order while dismissing pleas to postpone these JEE Main and NEET 2020 exams in its August 17 order that, "ultimately life has to go and the career of the students cannot be put on peril for the long and full academic year cannot be wasted", the review petitions argue, "The advice of “Life Must Go On” may have very sound philosophical underpinnings but cannot be a substitute for valid legal reasoning and logical analysis of the various aspects involved in the conduct of the NEET 2020 and JEE exams.”

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