Remove your bra? NEET aspirant asked to strip before examination

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Unaware of the do's and don'ts, many aspirants who appeared for NEET for the first time on Sunday, faced a piquant situation in various parts of the country.

The father of a girl who was forced to change her jeans due to the bizarre norms at an exam centre for the National Eligibility and Entrance Test (NEET) said that the girls were subjected to torture with the norms.

"The girls were subjected to torture. I was there with my daughter at the examination centre. My daughter objected saying that the jeans have the button made of metal which has to be removed," said the father.

He said that the centre even had issues with the pocket in the jeans, for which he rushed three kms and brought another cloth for her daughter.

"I saw another girl, who came to hand over her bra, which was a major shock to me. She was forced to remove her bra as it has metallic hooks. The local people were very co-operative they even provided us clothes," he added.

According to IANS report, a female candidate in Kannur was asked to remove her innerwear before sitting for the entrance test. "My daughter went inside the centre, only to return later and hand me her top innerwear," said the mother. There was apparently a metal hook in the innerwear, which set off the alarm.

Kannur District Police Chief G Siva Vikaram said a case would be registered if the parents or the girl filed a complaint. "So far we have not received any complaint. The Special Branch has been asked to look into the incident," he told PTI.

Another candidate was asked to remove a pocket and metal buttons of her jeans. The father of the candidate went to a shop three km away and brought new clothes for her.

While several female candidates were asked to remove their hair pins, bands, ornaments like earrings and nose-pin and other accessories.

Several boys wearing full sleeve shirts were told that only half-sleeve shirts were allowed in the examination hall. Left with no choice, they had to "customise" it by cutting it to size by using a scissor. Also, some who had come wearing shoes had to dump it and hastily opt for the sandals of their parents.

Some who had brought stationary items like pen, and pencil had to leave it with their parents. The Central Board of Secondary Education, which organises the exam, has already mentioned that pens will be provided to candidates at the test centres. Though it had given a list of do's and don'ts as part of measures to prevent malpractices, many aspirants were not aware of it.

The don'ts included big buttons, brooches and high-heeled shoes as regards female candidates and kurta-pyjama for male aspirants. Mobile phones and gadgets like bluetooth devices were also barred.

The Do's included "bring Admit card," "reach on time" at the exam centre with "only the required documents."

A section of them said that they had a tough time locating the test centre and wanted more information and landmarks to easily reach the centres. Some students claimed that they were not allowed inside the test centre though they were late only by a "few minutes."

"The ordeal is over but it's debatable how many female candidates would have been able to write the exam properly after they were subjected to so much humiliation. I will write to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan to seek action against those responsible," state Mahila Congress President Bindhu Krishna told the agency.

Former state unit chief of the Congress, VM Sudheeran, condemned the incident and said, "The ordeal (of the girl) was cruel and a blot on the state." He also demanded that the government conduct a probe and punish the guilty.

The Kerala Women's Commission has ordered a probe into the incident. CPI(M) MP PK Sreemathi also condemned the incident, saying the authorities would be held responsible if the girl failed to qualify as she had been "mentally harassed".

NEET was held in Chennai, Coimbatore, Madurai, Salem, Tiruchirapalli, Namakkal, Tirunelveli and Vellore and about 89,000 students took the exam in about 51 centres in these cities.
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