Madras HC Permits a Girl to Use Diaper During NEET Exam

Madras HC Permits a Girl to Use Diaper During NEET Exam
Madras HC Permits a Girl to Use Diaper During NEET Exam

The Madras High Court has allowed a girl, a NEET applicant with special needs, to wear a diaper and change it as needed during the NEET-UG exam on 5th May 2024. The order was issued by Justice G R Swaminathan at the hearing of a 19-year-old MBBS candidate.

The Girl’s Medical Conditions

She sustained facial damage when she was four years old after being burned by hot oil. She is currently receiving therapy for her neurogenic bladder, spectrum disorder, LETM and, NMO.

Her physician has confirmed that she cannot regulate her urination and that she must constantly wear a diaper that needs to be changed regularly.

Background of This Case

She approached the High Court after her representations to the National Testing Agency (NTA) and National Medical Commission were ignored. She asked to be allowed to sit in the examination hall wearing a nappy and to change it once or twice during the NEET-UG examination, depending on her condition.

What Does the Judiciary Have to Say?

According to Justice Swaminathan, the petitioner’s concerns could not have been written off as unjustified or inappropriate.

  • NEET is held annually throughout the nation. Hence, considering that and the required frisking that applicants must endure occasionally goes too far. A girl was once requested to take off her pants in Kerala. Particularly girls must bear such interrogations.
  • The Judge mentioned that if she required a bio-break while attempting the examination due to her biological condition, then it would be allowed in line with the rules of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016.
  • The petitioner will not be permitted to take the exam if the facilities she requests are refused. That would result in discrimination, which is forbidden by Article 14 of the Indian Constitution.
  • Every person with a disability has unique and different requirements. Special needs are not required of the disabled as defined by the Act alone. Judicial Swaminathan noted that beneficial ideas and principles need to be broadly interpreted and applied.

Declarations By the Court

  • Appropriate restrooms with water amenities must be available in every testing location.
  • It is required that a certain quantity of sanitary goods be kept next to the restrooms so that any girl who arrives unprepared can use them.
  • When necessary, female candidates must be permitted to use the bathrooms.
  • There is no need to frisk candidates again if the restrooms are thoroughly inspected beforehand and regularly.
  • The applicants will save valuable exam time by doing this. To ensure that the candidates have no stress at all, the authorities need to raise awareness.
  • It would have been appropriate if the clause had made it clear that the girl child could wear sanitary pads.

The court, thus recorded the stand and accepted the girl’s plea, pointing out that the NTA had granted the girl’s request and issued an undertaking to give the examiner appropriate instructions.




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