The Delhi High Court on Friday dismissed pleas challenging a notification of the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) that laid down the upper age limits of 25 and 30 for general and reserved categories respectively to apply for the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET).
The court, however, struck down a clause in the notification that bars students from open schools or those who have studied privately from appearing in the test.
A Bench of justices Sanjiv Khanna and Chander Shekhar said that the proviso to the clause of the CBSE’s January 22 notification prescribing an upper age limit of 25 in the case of general category candidates and 30 years in the case of reserved category candidates was “legal and valid”.
“To this extent, the writ petitions challenging vires of proviso to clause 4 of the Regulations are dismissed,” the Bench said. The proviso to a clause of the regulations disqualifying recognised open school board candidates “is struck down and declared unconstitutional“.
“Students/candidates, who have done class 12 from NIOS (National Institute of Open Schooling) or recognised open school state boards, would not be treated as per se disqualified for selection and appearance in NEET. Their NEET results, when otherwise eligible, would be declared with other candidates,” the Bench said in its 81-page judgement.