ISLAMABAD – Noted Pakistani lawyer Barrister Ahmad Pansota has started legal action for the retake of Medical and Dental Colleges Admission Test (MDCAT) that was marred by a cheating scandal this year.
Even before the Medical and Dental Colleges Admission Test (MDCAT) held on Sunday with over 180,000 candidates, a large number of students have been protesting against the Pakistan Medical Commission (PMC) across Pakistan, demanding retake of the exam on a single day to ensure transparency and merit.
Amid calls for protest and legal action, Barrister Ahmad Pansota started legal action by serving notice on Pakistan Medical and Dental Commission – a statutory regulatory authority that maintains the official register of medical practitioners in Pakistan.
In a social media post, Pansota said “On behalf my client Ms.Ariba, Legal Notice has been sent to Pakistan Medical Commission, whereby cancellation of #MDCAT2023 has been sought in addition to conducting a regular inquiry against those responsible for leaking the examination paper and cheating in the exams.
The authorities claiming that test for MBBS and BDS were conducted under the best possible system due to which transparency has been ensured, students have been protesting against MDCAT online, with hashtag #ReconductMDCAT2023 appeared in top trends on microblogging platform.
The legal notice stated “Our Client appeared for her MDCAT examination on the loth of September 2023, at the centre having the address 217, Division of S & T (First Floor), University of Education, Township, Lahore under the roll no. 1012111. 2. Prior to the examination, there was evidence of the entrance examination paper being leaked and subsequently made viral on various social media platforms. Initially, our client and other candidates believed it to be a hoax. However, upon appearing for the examination, our client realized that the leaked paper matched the actual examination paper.”
On behalf my client Ms.Ariba, Legal Notice has been sent to @pmc_org whereby cancellation of #MDCAT2023 has been sought in addition to conducting a regular inquiry against those responsible for leaking the examination paper and cheating in the exams. #ReconductMDCAT2023 https://t.co/XDuUTthdhN pic.twitter.com/Nx9quXYqxk
— Muhammad Ahmad Pansota (@Pansota1) September 13, 2023
It said several questions in the exam were beyond the scope of the prescribed syllabus, putting students at a significant disadvantage. Back in July when PMDC amended our syllabus, it was clearly mentioned that MDCAT 2023 would be a provincial exam, not a national exam. However, despite this clear directive, at least eight questions in the examination were taken from federal books and other online sources that were not part of the provincial syllabus.
It said that the paper leak was orchestrated unscrupulous individual working at your institution. This leaked paper was to select candidates, allowing them to gain an unfair advantage over other deserving and meritorious candidates, and scores obtained by candidates, ranging from 185 to 188, are statistically impossible and significant concerns about the integrity of the examination.
Furthermore, the notice stated that upon comparing the answer keys, candidates discovered that those been academically below average throughout their schooling a careers miraculously achieved high scores.
The notice further mentioned case of Bluetooth cheating that have been reported in KPK, further undermining the credibility of the Results. The potential existence of more undetected cases further underscores the urgency of addressing this issue promptly and effectively.
As regulator you have failed to perform your duty of conducting the exam fairly as required under the Pakistan Medical and Dental Council Act, 2022 and all other enabling provisions of the law. This is a matter of serious concern and such neglect has resulted in causing serious and irreparable loss to the candidates that appeared for MDCAT examinations 2023.
In light of these grave irregularities and to ensure the sanctity of the examination process, it called for immediate inquiry be conducted against the officials of PMDC responsible for the paper leak and its distribution, and cancellation of MDCAT 2023 and to reconduct the MDCAT keeping in view the principles of fairness and transparency.
It warned of legal action if PMC failed to comply with above mentioned demands, and legal proceedings, civil as well as criminal will be started at High Court.