The Supreme Court has taken note of a surge in “last minute” litigations related to admissions in medical colleges, which end up giving jitters to medical aspirants and colleges alike, and decided to lay down “deterrent measures” to avoid such situations. The top court is flooded with last minute petitions relating to the issue of either grant or denial of permission to medical colleges to admit students for MBBS and other courses across the country. A bench of Justices S A Bobde and L N Rao, while dealing with medical colleges related matters, observed that annual recurrence of this kind of litigation creates high pressure and anxiety for students, medical institutions and all concerned.
“All the counsel appearing for the parties agreed that it is high time some deterrent measures be laid down for colleges and state authorities from doing acts which generate such last minute litigation,” the bench said. “We therefore, consider it appropriate to post the matter for further hearing and orders on such measures on a later date,” the court said and posted the matter for hearing in December. The apex court was dealing with petitions filed by some private medical colleges which were denied permission to admit students in MBBS course for the academic year 2017-2018 by the orders issued by the Central Government last month. The colleges had told the bench that they were denied the permission to admit students in spite of the findings arrived at by the Centre that there was no or negligible deficiencies.
After the government’s order, these colleges had moved the Kerala High Court which, in an interim order, had allowed them to provisionally admit students for academic year 2017- 18. Thereafter, the Medical Council of India (MCI) had moved the apex court challenging the interim order of the high court which was set aside by the top court. However, the apex court had permitted the colleges to approach it by filing writ petitions. The bench, while dealing with the petitions filed by the colleges, observed that it was surprised that without giving any reasons, the government had declined permission to it for fresh batch for the year 2017-2018.
“Having regard to the fact that on merits, we find the deficiencies in the colleges are marginal and the colleges are largely compliant, we consider it appropriate to make a definite direction regarding the admission of students as has been done in the earlier decisions as cited above,” it said. “It is not possible to leave the students’ career in limbo. We order accordingly,” it said while noting submissions of the counsel appearing for Kerala that admission of around 400 students should not be allowed to be cancelled since it could not be possible for them to take admission in any other colleges at this stage.
The court also made it clear that marginal deficiencies would have to be removed completely by the college management and “they must offer the same for inspection by the MCI within a reasonable time from now and in any case well before the next academic year”.