In response to a news report published in The Hindu on Wednesday titled ‘Trust linked to Iqbal Singh gets nod for medical college,' Chief Secretary R. Chandramohan issued the following clarification on Wednesday: “With reference to the news item appearing in The Hindu dated April 20 about South Educational Trust (Regd.), regarding the issue of Essentiality Certificate to start a medical college in Karaikal, it is clarified that the South Educational Trust requested an NOC (No Objection Certificate) to start a medical college in Karaikal.

“They were issued with only an in-principle NOC by the government in March-April 2010 without any commitment. The Trust later approached the government for the issue of an Essentiality Certificate in the format prescribed by the Medical Council of India. Since this is governed by the Establishment of Medical College Regulations, 1999 of the MCI, Government of India, whose norms were not fulfilled by the trust, in this case viz., establishment of a 300-bedded (hospital) with adequate clinical material, the same could not be issued.

“The Trust had then requested for a certificate to enable it to raise bank financing for the project, based on the understanding given by it to fulfil the MCI conditions in due course. Therefore, a modified Essentiality Certificate modelled on the Essentiality Certificate prescribed by the MCI was issued by the government on February 25.

“The above certificate issued by the Government of Puducherry does not amount to the essentiality certificate required for applying to the MCI for starting a new medical college. An Essentiality Certification in the prescribed format can be issued by the government on application by the Trust only after it fulfilled MCI's prescribed essential conditions to be verified through an inspection by the Directorate of Health Services and with the recommendations of the State Cabinet.”