Image Source : INDIA TV The NEET UG 2024 was conducted on May 5.

In a statement released on Thursday, the National Testing Agency (NTA) addressed concerns regarding the recent increase in cut-off scores and the number of top scorers in the NEET-UG exam, emphasising that these trends highlight the competitive nature of the examination. The NTA clarified that the cutoff scores are determined based on the overall performance of candidates each year. This response from the NTA comes in the wake of allegations of irregularities in the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) and claims of inflated marks. 

NEET exam iIntegrity questioned amid top scores

Several aspirants have raised concerns, pointing to a possible inflation of scores that resulted in an unprecedented 67 candidates achieving the top rank. Notably, among these top scorers, six were from the same examination center in Haryana, further fueling suspicions and scrutiny regarding the integrity of the exam process. “The cutoff scores are determined based on the overall performance of candidates each year. The increase in cutoff reflects the competitive nature of the examination and the higher performance standards achieved by the candidates this year. Cut-offs and average marks of qualified candidates (out of 720) vary each year,” NTA said in a statement. 

NTA denies NEET-UG score inflation claims

The NTA has firmly denied the allegations of irregularities and inflated marks in the NEET-UG exam. They attributed the higher scores to several factors, including recent changes made in NCERT textbooks and the awarding of grace marks to compensate for lost time at certain examination centers. The NTA elaborated that the number of candidates appearing for the exam has significantly increased, from 20,38,596 in 2023 to 23,33,297 in 2024.

NTA clarifies grace marks amid NEET concerns

Addressing the issue of grace marks, the NTA clarified that several petitions had been filed by NEET-UG candidates in the high courts of Punjab and Haryana, Delhi, and Chhattisgarh. These petitions highlighted concerns about the loss of exam time due to issues at some examination centers, leading to the decision to award grace marks to affected students. “The concerns raised by the candidates through the writ petitions and representations about the loss of examination time was ascertained, and 1,563 candidates were compensated for the loss of time, and the revised marks of such candidates vary from -20 to 720 marks. Amongst these, the score of two candidates also happens to be 718 and 719, respectively, due to compensatory marks,” it added.

NEET UG examination 2024 

It should be noted here that the NEET UG 2024 examination was conducted on May 5 at 4,750 centres in 571 cities, including 14 abroad, for more tha 24 lakh aspirants. The controversy for the NTA is brewing as lakhs of students demand re-examination citing lack of clarity in NTA’s explanations and have even pushed for the Supreme Court’s intervention. The NTA had on May 5 claimed that the distribution of wrong question papers at an exam centre in Rajasthan led to some candidates walking out with the papers. The agency had denied any leak of the question paper.

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