Bihar Board Paid Rs 50 Lacs to NEET Candidates as Penalty

Patna High court directed Bihar exam board to pay Rs 50 lakh to candidates denied NEET 2016 counselling. Court has found the case as violation of their fundamental right and ordered the compensation for three NEET (UG)-2016 successful candidates who were denied counselling for additional MBBS seats, announced after they had taken admission in the BDS course.

Bihar Combined Entrance Competitive Examination Board (BCECEB) to pay Rs 50 lakh as compensation to three medical undergraduate course aspirants, who were denied MBBS pre-admission counselling, on October 7 last year, against all-India quota Seats.

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High court judgement which is 51 pages, ordered the BCECEB to pay as compensation a sum of Rs 20 lakh each to two petitioners – Manisha Gaurav and Adhishree – and a sum of Rs 10 lakh to petitioner Dipty Preyasi.  Compensation was awarded as damages caused to them because of the illegal and unconstitutional denial of their fundamental right to participate in the said counselling.

Candidates had qualified NEET 2016 and participated in the counselling and were accordingly allowed admission in BDS Course on the basis of merit. Later, Advertisement issued by controller of examination, BCECEB, announcing that in keeping with the Supreme Court’s order of October 6, counselling for filling up of balance of 15% all India quota seats remaining would be held on October 7 that year.

All candidates approached the officials against the 15% quota vacancies but refused by the board to accept their candidature for counselling without any valid reason though they were given counselling form, which they duly filled up.

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As all their original certificates were with the respondent authorities since the last counselling, in which they were given admission to BDS course, they informed the officials of their inability to produce the same. However, the officials would not hear their plea.

The officials’ stand was that once the petitioners accepted a seat in BDS course they could not be allowed to participate in counselling again.

High court in order clearly stated that “The denial by the respondents, particularly, the BCECEB, of rights of petitioners, in my opinion, is, thus, in gross violation of fundamental rights guaranteed under Articles 14 and 15 of the Constitution of India. Since such breach cannot be remedied given the facts and circumstances of the case, the damage caused to them is enormous and will have to be compensated by issuing appropriate orders exercising power of judicial review under Article 226 of the Constitution of India and they have to be compensated.”

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