The Ministry of Education made a significant announcement on Wednesday regarding the UGC-NET examination, which was scheduled for June 2024. This national eligibility test, conducted by the National Testing Agency (NTA) across multiple cities in India, has been canceled due to concerns over the exam's integrity.

The decision came after receiving alerts from the National Cyber Crime Threat Analytics Unit of the Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C) under the Ministry of Home Affairs. These alerts raised suspicions about potential compromises in the examination process.

UGC-NET is a crucial exam that determines eligibility for roles such as Assistant Professor and for Junior Research Fellowship and Assistant Professor positions in universities and colleges nationwide. It also assesses eligibility for fellowships under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment and the Ministry of Minorities Affairs.

In June 2024, a total of 11,21,225 candidates had registered for the UGC-NET exam, marking an increase from the previous year's December 2023 session. This exam was conducted across 1,205 exam centers in 317 cities throughout India. The participation rate was notably high, with 81% of registered candidates appearing for the exam.

NTA, responsible for conducting UGC-NET, normally administers the exam in Computer-Based Test (CBT) mode twice a year, in June and December. However, the June 2024 exam was conducted in pen and paper (OMR) mode, which now stands canceled.

The cancellation decision underscores the ministry's commitment to upholding transparency and fairness in the examination process. It reflects the government's stance against any compromise that could undermine the credibility of such vital assessments.

Moving forward, stakeholders and candidates await further updates from the Ministry of Education regarding the rescheduling or future arrangements for the UGC-NET examination. This incident serves as a reminder of the importance of maintaining the highest standards of integrity in conducting national-level examinations that impact the academic and professional aspirations of thousands of individuals across the country.