Delhi High Court Expresses Concern Over Manipulation of NEET-UG 2023 OMR Sheet
The Delhi High Court has expressed strong concern and disapproval over the attempt by a medical aspirant to manipulate her Optical Mark Recognition (OMR) sheet while appearing for the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) UG-2023.
In an order dated August 11, 2023, a single-judge bench led by Justice Purushaindra Kumar Kaurav noted that the petitioner had deliberately altered the official record on her OMR sheet. The court found this behavior unacceptable.
What shocked the court even more was the petitioner’s insistence that the OMR sheet she presented was the original one, despite having examined the version produced by the National Testing Agency (NTA). She claimed that the NTA’s version was not genuine.
Justice Kaurav emphasized that the NTA is a government agency responsible for conducting exams with a massive number of candidates. In 2023 alone, over 20 lakh candidates appeared for NEET-UG. The court found no reason to doubt the authenticity of the records presented by the NTA.
The court further clarified that the NTA had no motive to fabricate or alter any candidate’s marks and had no personal interest in the matter.
Considering the circumstances and the petitioner’s young age, the court chose not to impose severe penalties. Instead, it imposed a cost of Rs 20,000/- on the petitioner and disposed of the plea.
The petitioner, hailing from Andhra Pradesh, had requested the NTA to produce her original OMR sheet, recalculate her marks, and publish fresh results and merit lists. She also sought a direction for the allocation of an MBBS seat for NEET (UG)-2023 in a government medical college in Kerala or Andhra Pradesh.
According to the petitioner, the NTA declared her NEET-UG results on June 13, with an all-India rank of 351, scoring 697 out of 720 and a percentile of 99.9. She was surprised to find that her rank dropped to 12,530,32 with a percentile of 38.4 while trying to register on the Medical Counselling Committee (MCC) website. She alleged that her aggregate marks had been reduced and her rank downgraded.
The NTA, in response, revealed that the petitioner’s OMR sheet had been tampered with, and the responses on the sheet had been deliberately altered to claim higher marks.
This case highlights the importance of maintaining integrity in examination processes and underscores the severe consequences of attempting to manipulate official records.