The Supreme Court today refused to accord urgent hearing on a petition seeking inclusion of Urdu in the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET), meant for admissions in MBBS and BDS courses, which will be held in eight languages. A bench comprising Chief Justice J S Khehar and Justices D Y Chandrachud and S K Kaul did not accede to the submission for advancing the date of hearing of a petition filed by the Student Islamic Organisation (SIO).
The plea, filed through lawyers Parvez Dabas and Ravindra S Garia, has alleged exclusion of Urdu as one of the languages in NEET exam to be held this year, claiming it was “arbitrary and violative of Article 14 and 21 of the Constitution”.
The application form for NEET 2017, scheduled to be held on May 7 in eight different languages, is already out and the last date for submission is March 1. As per a CBSE notification, the medical entrance exam will be held in Hindi, English, Tamil, Telugu, Gujarati, Marathi, Assamese and Bengali languages.
The plea sought that Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and CBSE be directed to make a provision for Urdu as a medium in the exam for those who have already applied under compulsion before the last date of submission of forms. “Make provision to change option of language of Question Paper for those who already applied under compulsion and still desirous of question paper in Urdu language,” the plea said.
The petition also alleged that the Centre’s decision to exclude Urdu was “discriminatory, arbitrary, unreasonable and violative of Article 14 and 21 of the Constitution.”
“The decision to exclude Urdu which is the sixth most spoken language of India, while including seventh most spoken language Gujarati, and twelfth most spoken language Assamese is completely without any rationale basis,” it said.