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SC refuses to monitor police probe in NEET-II paper leak case

Supreme Court

New Delhi : The Supreme Court today declined to entertain a plea seeking a court-monitored probe into alleged leak of question papers of National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) phase-II at Haldwani district in Uttarakhand.

“Courts cannot monitor this. Courts are not meant for this, SSP (Haldwani) and others are looking into the matter and let them do the investigation,” a bench of Justices A R Dave and L Nageswara Rao said.

“Why do you want us to call for a status report? Go to the high court with your grievances, this is not in public interest. We are not going to supervise this. You cannot blame them (police) as they are looking into the matter.

“Why should we interfere? The Lodha panel (to oversee the functioning of the Medical Council of India) has also looked into it,” it said, leading to withdrawal of the plea.

The court, which was hearing the plea of NEET aspirant Anshul Sharma seeking a probe into alleged leak of question papers, asked him to move to the high court if need arises in the future.

The bench also considered the submission of the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) that there was no leak of question papers as it has tallied the seized question papers with the original ones.

CBSE will keep its mind open and would take an appropriate decision after perusing the outcome of the probe as it has to protect its “reputation” also, it said.

Senior advocate Sanjay Hegde, appearing for Sharma, referred to the last year’s decision of the court cancelling AIPMT, 2015 on account of largescale irregularities.

Haldwani Police had arrested five people in connection with the paper leak case on July 23, a day before NEET-II.

Around 4,500 candidates had appeared for the examination from seven centres in Haldwani.

Hegde said that the police, which acted on a tip off, found that many students, hailing from Bihar, Azamgarh, Lucknow, Assam and Chattisgarh, were being dictated questions by some accused which indicated a larger conspiracy.

He said that a court-monitored probe was needed and let the police file a status report. The plea was declined.

CBSE, which had rejected the claim of paper leak, had conduced the NEET Phase II examination on July 24 while NEET-I was held on May 1. The combined results of NEET-I and NEET-II will be declared on August 17.

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