Candidates looking to appear in the prestigious medical entrance examination -- National Eligibility Cum Entrance Test (NEET) -- have been waiting for the declaration of the exam date. Aspirants also have eyes on the possible roll-out of a second attempt in a year, which is currently under deliberation.
In a conversation with India TV Digital, NTA Director-General Vineet Joshi hinted at an announcement on the exam date by February-end or early-March. Explaining the delay in the declaration of the exam date, Joshi said there are a total of 28 boards, two ministries, and NTA involved in the brainstorming process, so the process is taking time. "We are in consultation with all the stakeholders, and taking into consideration all possible aspects in the best interest of students. We expect to reach a final decision by the end of February," the director-general of the premier organization said.
Earlier this month, the NTA DG had said that the agency officials were in active consultation with the Union Education Ministry and Health Ministry and was "hopeful" of announcing the NEET exam date "as early as possible".
In a conversation with India TV Digital early January, Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank had said that the ministry was exploring all the possibilities of conducting the exam twice a year in the interest of students.
The National Testing Agency (NTA) had also written to the Union Health Ministry asking whether the entrance test could be held twice a year, stating that the move would lessen stress and pressure on students.
Last year, the exam was held on September 13 after being postponed twice due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A total of 7,71,500 candidates had qualified for the exam, for which over 13.66 lakh appeared. The test was offered in eleven languages -- English, Urdu, Hindi, Assamese, Bengali, Odia, Marathi, Kannada, Gujarati, Tamil, and Telugu.