Allahabad High Court demands clarification from Centre, MCI and CBSE over upper age limit in NEET 2017

In a recent development to the ongoing resistance across the country against the upper age limit introduced to NEET 2017, the Allahabad High Court in a judgment on February 15 asked the Medical Council of India (MCI), Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and the Centre to clarify about the imposed limit. Hearing the petition filed by a medical aspirant, Navneet Tripathi, along with 22 others, judges Amreshwar Pratap Sahi and Sanjay Harkauli ordered MCI, CBSE and Union of India (UoI) to come with a clarification affidavit before February 20.

Since the matter is urgent, the Court ordered respondents to come up with a declaration mentioning the grounds on which they have set the upper age limit for NEET 2017. Online applications for NEET 2017 are closing on March 1, and thus the court ordered an immediate reply in this regard to dispose the matter soon.

Talking to PaGaLGuY, advocate Rajat Rajan Singh representing the petitioners said, “There is no mention in the MCI regulations about an upper age limit and that was our main ground of challenge. The court asked respondents whether they had come up with an amendment to introduce the upper age limit, to which MCI replied that it was a decision taken by the authorities and is yet to take a form of resolution.”

According to Singh, the MCI has averted the process of putting the decision of upper age limit in front of the board of governors. Not only that, he mentioned that it was not discussed with the central government and no discussions were held amongst the stakeholders before implementing it into the notification. “The Court asked the CBSE, MCI and centre to file an affidavit before February 20, seeking clarification about their decision. Even if the court orders in favour of the upper age limit proposed by the bodies, it would not be implemented from this year as it would have to be first amended and included in the MCI regulation,” added Singh.

There is another petition filed in the Supreme Court against imposing upper age limit in NEET, which will be heard tomorrow on February 17. “If the apex court decides in favour or even against the petition tomorrow, our petition will be dissolved and we have to follow the orders,” concluded Singh.

Click here to read the Court Order.