Published: 09th November 2021
NEET UG 2021: Some candidates claim their OMR sheets were blank, landed them with zero marks
Late October, a NEET candidate approached the Kerala High Court alleging that the OMR sheet attached to her application number has been manipulated. NTA told the court that a probe has been initiate
Young Afwan Ansari from Mumbai scored 91 per cent in his Class 12, he scored 89 cent in his Class 10. For the last two years, Afwan has been dreaming of a medical seat. He scored 413 out of the total 720 marks in his first attempt at the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test - Undergraduate (NEET UG). This year he scored zero. Afwan and some other students like him believe there has been tampering with their optical mark recognition (OMR) sheet.
"When I checked my NEET results, it showed that I got zero. Initially, I thought it might be a technical glitch as the result website may have been overloaded but it wasn't a glitch," Afwan says. He then consulted his professors who told him to immediately check his OMR. "I had no idea that OMR is sent via email. I didn't know that we had to see our OMR and challenge it. I was directly waiting for my results."
Soon after the results, he was anxiously searching for his OMR but found nothing. It then dawned upon him to check the 'spam' folder and there it was, his years of hard work staring back at him on a sheet that magically went blank. It was sent mid-October. "My details were all there but the entire sheet was blank. I had solved the entire paper," he claimed.
Afwan is now left with a lot of uncertainty. In case there is no solution to the predicament he is in, he said he'll be giving NEET another shot next year. "We have emailed everything to the National Testing Agency but there has been no response there. We even approached the centre where my exam was conducted, they told us that only NTA can help."
Like Afwan, even Manju Sharma from Rajasthan lost time because of the 'spam' folder. Her sister, Vijay Laxmi Sharma, who is a final year medical student at a college in Maharashtra, said, "We used to check the mail daily for Manju's OMR sheet. Nobody told us that it would go to the spam folder. How are we expected to know this?" Manju's OMR sheet was blank as well. This was her third attempt.
Even though Manju scored below 300 in her last two attempts, she said she was expecting over 600 in this attempt. She scored about 82 per cent in her Class 12. "We went all the way to the NTA office in Delhi. They told us that students don't study and then blame them," Manju said.
In a quivering voice, she said, "It is not like I am not good at academics, I am decent at it. Now my family is telling me to study better or they will get me married. How is it my fault?" According to the screenshot of the email her older sister sent to the testing agency, she seemed to have sent it to an incorrect email address and the mail remains undelivered.
Late October, a NEET candidate approached the Kerala High Court alleging that the OMR sheet attached to her application number has been manipulated. The testing agency on November 9 told the Kerala High Court that it has initiated a probe into the alleged incident of manipulation. The matter will be taken up again on November 16.
The NTA allows for students to challenge the results of NEET either by the question or as an entire evaluation error.