Delhi recorded 75.49% qualification with respect to candidates appearing from the region, the highest among the states, followed by Haryana with 72.9%. In fact, all the seven states of north India, including Rajasthan, UP, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh, registered over 60% qualification percentage. And more than one-third of the toppers are also from the north Indian states.
Rajasthan saw 68.68% candidates out of 95,752 qualify who appeared from this region. But all-India topper Soyeb Aftab, who spent two years in Rajasthan for coaching and appeared for his NEET in Kota, was shown as a top ranker from Odisha in the state toppers’ list. Interestingly, the success story of Rajasthan does not lie in the coaching industry as majority of the candidates are domicile students from the state.
Experts also feel that success in the state is from schools affiliated to the Rajasthan Board of Secondary Education as the all-India fourth ranked Vineet Sharma of Dausa said that the school syllabus has helped him in scoring well over lakhs of students even without any coaching.
Founder of ‘50 villagers Sewa Sansthan’, an NGO in Barmer, Dr Bharat Saran, who is a medical officer in government medical college, has claimed that all his 45 students appearing in the examination have qualified in NEET. “Our best score was 605 and out of 45 qualified students, 11 of them will study in the government medical colleges,” said Saran.
A downside this year has been the performance of candidates from Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, the two states which have always been among the top performing regions. However, the percentage of candidates qualifying in Andhra Pradesh dropped to 58.63% from 70.72% in 2019 and 59.15% from 67.44% in Telangana. However, in terms of topper 15 of the top 50 all-India rank holders come from these two states.
Experts cite lack of continuous monitoring and students being stuck in remote areas with no resources as main reasons for comparatively fewer students qualifying the NEET-UG 2020 as compared to 2019. Faculty running NEET programmes for corporate institutes in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh said that except for 2,000 to 3,000 students, not many were in touch with the faculty.
“Unlike students from the north, our students are used to being monitored and guided continuously. Due to Covid-19, this was missing. There was no motivation for them to continue with their preparation,” said V Kumar, executive dean, Sri Chaitanya Educational Institutions, whose students managed to secure four ranks in the top 11 spots in the country.
They also said that while most of the students from north India are associated with proper coaching institutes, in Telangana and Andhra that is not the case as many, who are otherwise on the residential campuses, are stuck at home with no or minimum facilities.
“A majority of institutes managed to conduct classes even during the lockdown as they are not intermediate colleges. However, here that was not the case. Further, the number of candidates who opt for long term or taking NEET for the second time will be hardly 10% in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh whereas in other parts the number is quite huge,” said Ashok Kumar Veda, chemistry faculty, Narayana group.