J. Venkatesan

Private medical colleges association files petition in Supreme Court

New Delhi: The Karnataka Private Medical Colleges' Association has filed a petition in the Supreme Court challenging an Ordinance promulgated by the Karnataka Government seeking to take over the entire process of admissions to postgraduate medical, dental and diploma courses in unaided self-financing colleges in the State.

A Bench of Justice K.G. Balakrishnan and Justice P.P. Naolekar is already hearing a petition filed by the association and five others challenging a notification in this regard by the State Government.

Notification

During the course of arguments on January 23, Solicitor-General G.E. Vahanvati submitted that subsequent to the notification an Ordinance had been issued and the petitioners had not challenged the same.

In the light of this submission, senior counsel K.K. Venugopal, appearing for the petitioners, told the court that the Ordinance would also be challenged. Accordingly, a fresh application had been filed questioning the validity of the Ordinance, and it would be taken up for hearing on January 27.

Entrance test

Even as the petitioners announced holding of an entrance test for admission to postgraduate medical admissions on January 29, the State government by a notification issued on December 21, stating that for admission to postgraduate medical and dental degree and diploma courses in private medical, dental colleges and deemed universities, it would hold a entrance test, and admissions would be done through centralised counselling.

The association said by the Ordinance issued the next day "the Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences takes over all admissions irrespective of whether it is to a single college providing a course no other college is providing or whether it is to all the colleges of the same type where two or three of such colleges have opted out of the entrance test (proposed by the petitioner)."

Apex court ruling

The petitioner contended that the Government had no power to interfere with the admission process adopted by unaided colleges and act contrary to the ruling given by the apex court in the Inamdar case.

It said such a power could not be exercised by the university as it would be violative of the rights of minority as well as non-minority unaided professional colleges.

It sought quashing of the Ordinance and an interim stay of its operation and to permit the association to hold the entrance test as scheduled on January 29.

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