: Gurmeet Ram Rahim episode forced Punjab, Haryana to extend deadline till Sept 7

Both the states were supposed to complete the NEET 2017 counselling by August 31, but they could not, due to curfew and violence in the states after conviction of Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Singh Ram Rahim in a rape case on August 25.

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The deadline for in Haryana and Punjab have been extended to September 7. Both the states were supposed to complete the counselling by August 31, but they could not, due to curfew and violence in the states after conviction of Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Singh Ram Rahim in a rape case on August 25.

Dera Sacha Sauda chief was found guilty of rape by a special CBI court in Panchkula, Haryana. He was immediately taken into judicial custody. Following which thousands of followers of Ram Rahim went on the rampage, setting fire to vehicles, buildings and railway stations. The unrest which began in Panchkula, spread to other parts of Haryana and Punjab.

Owning to this both the states missed the August 31 deadline to conclude the counselling for admission to MBBS and BDS as per the National Eligibility and Entrance Test (NEET) 2017. The attorney generals for both the states informed the same to Supreme Court and apex court extended the deadline till September 7 and added that no other state should get the benefit of the extension.

KK Venugopal, attorney general for the state in the SC, informed the court that Baba Farid University of Health Sciences (BFUHS), Faridkot, had postponed the counselling for Punjab due to law and order problem and other disturbances. The same argument was advanced by Alok Sangwan, additional advocate general for Haryana. The top court accepted the argument and extended the NEET 2017 Counselling deadline for Haryana and Punjab till September 7.

“We could have allotted all the seats to the candidates in the third counselling itself. But heavy rain led to absolute mess. Students with high merit returned without participating in the counselling. We didn’t want to be unfair to anyone. Since the apex court had extended the deadline, we decided to conduct final counselling for the left-out seats. Only fresh applications will be entertained now,” HT quoted a senior official of the BFUHS.

7 MBBS, 238 BDS seats up for grab

According to reports, The BFUHS on August 31 conducted the third round of counselling for 246 MBBS seats and 620 BDS seats. Out of those, seven and 238 seats are still vacant, respectively. The BFUHS will conduct physical counselling for the MBBS and BDS seats, on September 4 and 6.

Earlier on August 18, BFUHS allotted 1,360 seats of MBBS and BDS studies in Punjab government institutes in the second round of counselling for state quota. The state quota has 2,255 seats — 1,125 in MBBS seats in eight colleges, and 1,130 in in 14 colleges including NRI seats.

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