The answer key for National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) was available from June 15 to 16, 2017. The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) invited students, parents, and experts to analyze and challenge the published answer key. As per the objections submitted by the students and even experts, it has come to light that some answers in the key were incorrect.

A day after the examination, various newspapers also reported that three questions in Code W, Biology section, had more than one correct answer. This left the students scratching their head which eventually lead to waste of time.

However, the issue of multiple answers to a question was overshadowed by the different question paper in regional languages dispute, which forced HC ordered interim hold on NEET 2017.  Now that the matter has been put to rest, the focus is back to the questions and answers in the examination.

Discrepancy in Answer Key for Chemistry and Biology Section

Gurasis Singh Sodhi, an entrant of NEET 2017, has challenged three questions in all. Two are from the Chemistry section, whereas, one is from Biology. He has the same proposition that the question in Biology section had more than one correct answer.

Experts have also challenged questions. Dr. Arvind Goyal is a Biology expert and he claims that the answers for the question number 18 and 42 were incorrect.

Numerous other academicians have pointed out mistakes in the framing or questions. Sameer Phale, provided coaching for NEET said, “The question on frogs should not have been there in the question paper at all. The topics ‘frog’ and ‘earthworm’ were kept out of the syllabus prescribed by Medical Council of India (MCI) for NEET. It is shocking that it is being ignored in the review even though it should have been the first question to be noticed by these experts.”

He also mentioned that CBSE has realized its mistake and have identified two ambiguous question in the Physics section but this could have been ignored. He believed that the students were not suppose to pay Rs. 1000 each, if the Board would have given a thorough glance to the questions and answers.

Agreed that the amount will be refunded upon a successful challenge, but the logic of depositing Rs. 10,000 for 10 questions is beyond me. There are still many students in the country who cannot afford to bear this amount.” said Phale.

Few Questions Under Scrutiny

The following are the questions, against which the challenges have been submitted.

Questions in Biology Section:

Question 1 – In case of a couple where male is having a very low sperm count, which technique will be suitable for fertilization?

Answer Options – i) Intrauterine transfer ii)Gametic intracytoplasmic fallopian transfer iii) Artificial insemination and iv) Intracytoplasmic sperm injection

Answer in the Key – (iii) Artificial insemination

View of Experts – The answer iv, i.e. Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection is a better option because low sperm count is qualitative criteria and both artificial insemination and ICSI can be used.

Question 2 – Adult human RBCs are enucleate. Which of the following statements is/are most appropriate explanation for this feature? a) They do not need to reproduce, b) They are somatic cells, c) They do not metabolize and d) All their internal space is available for oxygen transport

Answer Options – i) Only d ii) Only iii) a,c, d iv) b and c

Answer in the Key – (iii) a,c,d

View of Experts – First of all, option (c) is incorrect as it says that they do not metabolise. Also, option (a) is incorrect as well. The only correct answer is (i)

Question in Chemistry Section:

Question 1 – Ionic mobility of which of the following alkali metals is lowest when aqueous solution of their salts are put under electric field?

Answer Options – i) Na ii) K iii) Rb iv) Li

Answer in the Key – (iii) Rb

View of Experts – The smallest of all is Lithium ion, hence will be most hydrated in water. Whereas,  the radius of the Hydrated ion will be the largest and will be least mobile. So, the correct answer is (iv) Li.

These are just few questions which are under scrutiny. Overall, multiple questions have been challenged by the students and experts.

How This Impacts Medical Aspirants

The total number of questions in the exam was 180, and each carried 4 marks. An incorrect answer leaves to deduction of not 4 but 5 marks because negative marking of 1 is applicable. In the worst case scenario, a student will be directly losing 15 marks. In such tough competition even ½ a mark can affect the merit then such huge loss of marks will push the student at the bottom on the line.

“The competition is really tough and rank can drop by hundreds of places on a difference of 2-3 marks,” says Dr. Arvind Goyal (Biology Expert)

We will All Go Down Together

One similarity between Humpty Dumpty and CBSE is that both had a great fall and cannot be where it was before

CBSE has experienced a lot of flak this year but one is not able to feel bad for the Board as it never learns. Since 2015, there is some or the other irregularity in medical entrance examination yet there is no sign of improvement.

Agree that the Board has said that it cannot conduct so many examinations back to back and the Government is just brushing the Board aside but how long will this all go?

Medicine is a crucial field which deals with life and death directly. But what is happening right now is ruining the lives of young minds who could have been the best gynecologist, oncologist and what not. Yet, what seems like is that the authorities of our nations are determined to take it all down.

Leaking of question paper, the sudden revival of NEET, different question paper presented in regional languages. What more horrible is left to experience by the medical aspirants? Imagining the agony of a candidate studying under the lamp for past three years and facing the worst of worst each time, can make anyone cringe.

The Board, as well as the higher education committees of our nation, should look seriously into the matter. The sooner it is realized that the career of the student is at stake the better it will be for the entire nation.

Share your views on the matter, comment below.

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12 COMMENTS

  1. NEET/CBSE has must own the responsibility of asking wrong questions and wasted the golden time of students who try to solve the problems. Hence, strongly suggest to conduct re-neet immediately and declare the result in 30 days. they have to work 24 hours. What is courts and the concerned ministry are doing.No comments from them.

  2. absolute truth spoken. I am a medical aspirant and i was one of the entrant of NEET 2017. we are hopeless at this moment.

  3. Yes, I agree with this
    Even a single mark will decide the fate of a student
    They shouldn’t get suffer for mistake of one’s preparation of question paper and similarly answers
    Correct answers should get the marks instead of looking it as already declared by CBSE and correction is difficult

  4. Even 1 mark decides the fate of the students
    correct answer should get the marks
    For one’s mistake on preparing Question paper and answer key, students shouldn’t suffer
    CBSE should view it seriously and decide quickly

  5. CBSE must own the mess it created. I strongly agree that all students cannot deposit Rs. 1000 per question to challenge for wrong answers. This is absurd! In fact, students should not be asked to deposit any money. CBSE should send the question papers and answer keys to a panel of subject experts out side CBSE board and ask them to challenge for any mistakes. Or experts from various/selected colleges must be consulted before finalizing the answer key. This way, a lot of confusion and hardships can be taken care. Nonetheless, if there were wrong key answers (and you know there were wrong key answers!), CBSE must award marks for the correct answers regardless of whether it was challenged by students. NO STUDENT SHOULD LOSE EVEN SINGLE MARK as this is a competitive exam at national level. Hope CBSE will learn and improve from mistakes.

  6. Even 1 mark decide the fate of student.

    CBSE should provide marks for question challenged and that are legible ,not only to those who challenge ,,but to all candidate those who attempted that particular question…….

    • CBSE cannot take our bright kids’ future for a rid by putting questions having multiple ans, by giving credit , they must conclude quickly and close the matter without further loss of time , when SC has given a green signal to them to a head and announce NEET. First of all why there are questions having multiple ans leading to kids wasting their so valuable time on those questions . Secondly now that such questions in exam were there , CBSE must give the credit and close the matter and quickly annnoune NEET result.

      • Cbse play students future they even wrongly say ro supreme Court on 12 June that they care for students & results should declared till not able to give results at least give cut off list for medical and paramedical so students can take decision just same full to cbse is it PM dreme of NEW INDIA Know enough

  7. Exactly! I really don’t understand why didn’t the Hon’ble Supreme Court order cbse to re conduct neet 2017??????? Is cbse playing a game with the student’s future? How can CBSE judge 11 lakhs students with non uniform question papars? This is really very much impractical as well as incorrect! Last year the central government ordered to carry out one and only one medical exam all over india upon which the selection of students for MBBS/BDS would depend? But was the order correctly executed? No,absolutely not. But the Hon’ble supreme did not even cared for the students,instead gave cbse the freedom to continue committing mistakes year after year by not giving them strict orders. I think this year many students irrespective of their efforts are going to suffer,which should’nt have happened if the government ordered to conduct neet again which majority of students’ wished for.

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