Madras High Court asked Govt. to spell out stand on MCI Notification on NEET –
Another issue in the form of petition was filed by the minority institution over the admission to medical courses through NEET examination a few days back. It was on Wednesday, 22nd March, the Madras High Court Bench directed the state government to spell out its stand on the two notifications issued by the Medical Council of India, (MCI) on March 10 for conducting Statewide counseling on the basis of National Eligibility- cum-Entrance Test (NEET) merit list for the admissions into undergraduate as well as postgraduate courses in all medical educational institutions.
Counselling for the PG courses is scheduled to begin from 4th April, where Justice V. Parthiban instructed the government advocate to get instructions from the Health Secretary before the commencement of the counselling.
He told the counsel “Let us know how do you [ the State government] propose to deal with the situation. We need some clarity on the issue, especially in the light of the Constitutional right of minorities, to administer educational institutions,”
The Judge was seized of two writ petitions filed by the chairman of Padanilam Welfare Trust, which runs linguistic minority educational institutions in Kanyakumari district, thereby challenging the validity of MCI notifications amending the Regulations on Graduate Medical Education, 1997 and Postgraduate Medical Regulations, 2000 and also introducing new provisions for conducting common counseling in every state.
Issac Mohanlal, who is the senior counsel and also representing the petitioner institution, explained to the court that the state government has totally opposed the NEET examination. He also noted that “In fact, the Tamil Nadu Assembly has unanimously passed a Bill to bypass admissions in engineering and medical colleges through NEET and the proposed law is pending before the President for his assent. The State government is completely against NEET,”
When the judge need an explanation on how the self-financing minority colleges will make the admissions if the MCI notifications, under challenge now, had not been issued , the Senior Counsel mentioned that in such a case, the colleges would enjoy the right to fill up 50% of seats in undergraduate medical courses and 100% seats in postgraduate courses by giving due preference to minorities and without compromising merit too.
V.P. Raman counsel for MCI brought in to notice to the court that the Christian Medical College Ludhiana Society had filed a similar case before the Supreme Court questioning the right of minority institutions to admit students in view of the introduction of NEET. Though that case was filed even before the issuance of the latest MCI notifications, the legal issue raised in that case was the same as it had been raised in the present cases, he said and pointed out that the apex court had posted that case for hearing on Friday.
He also proceeded that the instructions would be obtained from the MCI by Tuesday as to how did it propose to go about conducting the counseling for medical admissions this year.