"Happy to announce that #Karnataka students who missed #NEET exam due to railway delay will get another chance," tweeted Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar.
Javadekar responded a day after state Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy urged him to hold the test for the 365 students who missed it for no fault of theirs.
"Thank you @PrakashJavdekar and @HRDMinistry for considering the request and helping our students," re-tweeted Kumaraswamy.
The NEET exam is conducted every year in May by the National Testing Agency (NTA) of the HRD ministry. The exam is conducted for students seeking admission in state-run and private medical and dental colleges in India for studying graduate and postgraduate courses.
The students, who took the Hampi Express from Hubli to Mysuru via Koppal, Hospet and Bellary, reached Bengaluru over seven hours late. Thus, while the test began at 2 pm, the train reached at 2.36 p.m. instead of 7.00 a.m.
The students stood outside the railway station for a protest demo to express their frustration over missing the test without them being at fault. "The students could not reach the test centres across the city in time and missed it," a South Western Railway (SWR) official reported. The railways admitted to the train being late due to diversion of the train route from the normal route due to doubling of line work and operational reasons since May 3, 2019.
In another case, an official told, "As the distance from the exam centre at Chikkaballapur to the centre in Bengaluru is about 40km, about 150 students who reached the centre in time to appear for the test there, could not commute to the city by 2:00 p.m and missed it for no fault of them." Kumaraswamy directed state Chief Secretary T.M. Vijay Bhaskar to request the HRD Ministry for holding the test again for the 150 students who missed it due to change in exam centre at the last minute from an adjacent district to the state capital.
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