NEET 2020: Applicants for MBBS abroad can skip Sept exam, says MCI

Guidance and Counseling for students

NEW DELHI: The Medical Council of India has allowed one-time exemption from taking the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) to MBBS candidates seeking admission abroad. However, what the MCI has granted is a postponement rather than a full exemption as these candidates will have to take NEET whenever it is held next, in 2020 or 2021.

The MCI has issued a notice saying that students seeking admission to foreign medical colleges need not write the NEET 2020, scheduled to be held next month. The notice is based on a Delhi High Court order. An MBBS aspirant seeking to join a foreign medical college and proceed before September 15 had filed the petition. The NEET exam date is September 13.


As per the MCI notice, the requirement of qualifying NEET—UG is mandatory for aspirants of MBBS or its equivalent qualification from any foreign country. “Concerning the present year, in view of the COVID-19 pandemic, the NEET-UG 2020 which was first scheduled on 31st May 2020, [was] rescheduled to 27th July 2020 and is now likely to take place on 13th September 2020. It is the contention of petitioner in the aforesaid writ petition before the Delhi High Court, that classes in foreign medical institutes are likely to commence from 15th September and she has to complete her admission formalities prior to that date, by which time NEET-UG 2020 Results would not be declared. Thus, she stands to lose an academic year in the process,” says the notice which mentions the Delhi High Court’s remarks.

NEET 2020 update

The MCI notice further says that the exemption is being granted as “a one-time measure” to address the concerns of candidates like the petitioner who can now take admission to foreign medical colleges without qualifying the NEET first. However, the candidates must fulfil all the other criteria required for permission.

The notice, however, states that it would be mandatory for such candidates to qualify the NEET-UG in 2020 or 2021. It states, “In case, such candidates fail to qualify NEET-UG in 2020 or 2021, their decision to continue their Foreign Medical Courses thereafter shall be at their own risk, as they shall not be entitled to appear for the Screening Test and thereby would not be entitled to grant of Provisional/Permanent Registration by the State Medical Councils. Further, it is incumbent upon such candidates to faithfully follow with norms laid down by the Central Government for travelling abroad in view of COVID-19 Pandemic.”


Earlier on August 17, the Supreme Court dismissed a petition seeking postponement of NEET 2020 and JEE Main, scheduled in September filed by 11 students from 11 states. Since then a section of students are still demanding postponement of the examination and have also written to the education minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.


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