Making the competition tougher, the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (Undergraduate) or NEET-UG 2022 for the first time breached the 18-lakh registrations mark and recorded an increase of 2.57 lakh aspirants this year from 2021.

Moreover, there is a 274.3% increase in the number of candidates taking the exam in 12 Indian languages in the last five years, with Tamil language registering a 60% increase from a year back.

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Female NEET Aspirants Cross 10 Lakh Mark

For the first time, the number of female candidates who have registered to take the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (Undergraduate) or NEET-UG 2022 has crossed the figure of 10 lakh. The gap between female and male candidates in 2022 is nearly 2.6 lakh. Female candidates in the last five years have registered an increase of nearly 41%.

Analyzing the 2022 registration data accessed exclusively by TOI, the number of registrations has shown significant growth in the last five years, up from 11.4 lakh in 2017 to 18.7 lakh this year. While the year-on-year increase in numbers of candidates in the past decade averaged around 1.5 lakh, there was a significant dip in this trend in 2020 and 2021 during the pandemic when the numbers increased by 78,060 and 17,342, respectively.

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The exam administered in 13 languages, including 12 Indian languages. While the number of candidates taking the exam in Hindi has more than doubled in the last five years – up from 1.2 lakh in 2017 to 2.5 lakh in 2022, other languages too have witnessed a gradual increase in the number of candidates preferring to appear in their mother tongue. After Hindi, those taking the exams in Gujarati are the second highest with nearly 50,000 aspirants, followed by Bengali with over 42,000 candidates and Tamil with over 31,800 candidates.

NEET-UG is the qualifying entrance exam for admission to bachelor of medicine and bachelor of surgery (MBBS), bachelor of dental surgery (BDS), bachelor of ayurveda, medicine and surgery (BAMS), bachelor of siddha medicine and surgery (BSMS), bachelor of unani medicine and surgery (BUMS), and bachelor of homeopathic medicine and surgery (BHMS) and BSc (H) Nursing courses of various medical colleges, which include premier medical colleges like AIIMS and Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER), Puducherry.

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State-wise the largest number of registrations have received from Maharashtra (2.5 lakh), followed by Uttar Pradesh (2.1 lakh). The other four states which have over one lakh registrations are Karnataka (1.3 lakh), Kerala (1.2 lakh), Rajasthan (1.4 lakh) and Tamil Nadu (1.4 lakh). In fact, nearly 55% of the total candidates have registered for the exam from these six states. And if the three states – Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal — with over 90,000 registrations each accounted for, 70% of the candidates are coming from nine of 37 states/ UTs.
The three most opted for cities to take the exams this year are Kota (37,774), Patna (36,114) and Jaipur (34,090).

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