+

NTA Postpones CSIR-UGC-NET Amid Exam Scandles, Centre Enacts Law With 1 Crore Fine | 10 Key Points

Amid a significant controversy regarding irregularities in the NEET-UG exam and the cancellation of the UGC-NET entrance test, the National Testing Agency (NTA) announced on Friday the postponement of the June edition of the Joint Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and University Grants Commission (UGC) National Eligibility Test (NET). This test determines eligibility […]

Amid a significant controversy regarding irregularities in the NEET-UG exam and the cancellation of the UGC-NET entrance test, the National Testing Agency (NTA) announced on Friday the postponement of the June edition of the Joint Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and University Grants Commission (UGC) National Eligibility Test (NET). This test determines eligibility for junior research fellowships and PhD admissions in science disciplines.

The government also enacted a stringent law to eliminate malpractices in competitive examinations. This law includes severe punitive measures for those involved in such offenses, with penalties reaching up to a 10-year jail term and a fine of up to Rs. 1 crore.

Here are 10 points on the NEET and UGC-NET paper leak controversy:

1. The NTA, under scrutiny for the UGC-NET exam cancellation due to a paper leak, postponed the CSIR-UGC-NET citing unavoidable circumstances and logistical issues. “The Joint CSIR-UGC-NET Examination June-2024, scheduled to be held between 25.06.2024 and 27.06.2024, is being postponed due to unavoidable circumstances as well as logistic issues. The revised schedule for the conduct of this examination will be announced later through the official website,” stated the NTA in a circular.

2. The Congress party criticized the BJP-led Central government over this development. Senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh remarked, “Yet another NTA exam postponed. This time it is the CSIR-UGC-NET. Clearly, NTA has become Narendra’s Trauma Agency for youth.”

3. The CSIR-UGC-NET exam is held biannually—in June and December—in five subjects: Chemical Sciences, Earth, Atmospheric, Ocean and Planetary Sciences, Life Sciences, Mathematical Sciences, and Physical Sciences. The computer-based test results are crucial for admissions to premier institutions like IITs and Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISERs). More than 2 lakh students were expected to take the exam, with over 1.75 lakh having appeared for it in December last year.

4. The Public Examinations (Prevention of Unfair Means) Act, 2024 was notified by the personnel ministry on Friday night. The law’s provisions took effect on June 21, following President Droupadi Murmu’s approval four months earlier. “In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (2) of section 1 of the Public Examinations (Prevention of Unfair Means) Act, 2024 (1 of 2024), the Central Government hereby appoints the 21st day of June, 2024, as the date on which the provisions of the said Act shall come into force,” the notification stated.

5. Passed by the Rajya Sabha on February 9 and the Lok Sabha on February 6, the law received the President’s assent on February 12. It covers exams conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC), Staff Selection Commission (SSC), railways, banking recruitment exams, and the NTA. The law prescribes five to 10 years of imprisonment and a minimum fine of ₹1 crore for those involved in organized cheating crimes.

6. The BJP government has called for a CBI probe into the UGC-NET exam cancellation. Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan announced that the exam was canceled after authorities discovered the question paper on the darknet, which was also being circulated on Telegram.

7. Minister Pradhan attributed the paper leak to an institutional failure of the NTA. He assured that a reform committee would be formed and actions would be taken. “The paper leak is an institutional failure of NTA. We are assuring you that there will be a reform committee and action will be taken,” he stated.

8. The Supreme Court on Saturday declined to halt the NEET exam counseling. Medical aspirants have alleged irregularities, noting that 67 students achieved perfect scores in one of the country’s most challenging tests. There is also dissatisfaction regarding grace marks, with the agency asking over 1500 students to retake the medical entrance test.

9. Authorities arrested four individuals in Bihar, including a medical aspirant, for the alleged NEET-UG 2024 exam paper leak.

10. Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra criticized the government over irregularities in competitive exams. “In the last five years, papers of 43 recruitment exams have been leaked in the country. Paper leak has become a national problem of our country under BJP rule which has ruined the future of crores of youth so far. India is the youngest country in the world. We have the largest youth population. Instead of making these youth skilled and capable, the BJP government is making them weak,” she alleged.

Tags:

Exam PostponedNEET-UG 2024 Exam IrregularitiesNTATDGThe Daily GuardianUGC-NET Entrance Test