"In view of the difficulties pointed out in holding the off-line examination and the vulnerability of the same and advantages of on-line system of examination, we are satisfied that there is no merit in the Writ Petition. The Writ Petition is accordingly dismissed," a bench of justices Arun Mishra and U U Lalit said.
The top court while dismissing the plea observed that "standard of examination for AIIMS cannot be diluted" and "if executive is working towards maintaining the standard of exam, then we must give them the elbow room".
Advocate Dushyant Parashar, appearing for AIIMS, said that the question paper for all the four shifts spanning over two days will have same difficulty level as certified by experts and the percentile system of marking is the best standard to judge the candidate.
He said that the total number of candidates taking the examination for 2018 are 4.5 lakhs and submitted a confidential report prepared by the competent authority to the court.
The counsel for petitioner Sneha Chandra Shekhar Fule and others contended that the online entrance examination to be conducted in four shifts in two days for the 807 seats will have different difficulty levels.
The petitioners have also challenged the percentile system of ranking terming it is an opaque process.
It had also asked Parashar to reply to the issue of vulnerability, if the entrance examination is held through offline system.
The health institute had told the court that the online entrance examination for AIIMS MBBS courses is scheduled to be held on May 26 and 27 tentatively in two shifts each day.
It had said that the first shift will start at 9 AM to 12.30 AM while the second shift will start from 3 PM to 6.30 PM and the number of shifts and dates may vary depending on number of applicants/logistics etc.
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