There is no mechanism to check various malpractices by the institutions

While dismissing a writ petition by the chairman of a deemed university challenging the Medical Council of India’s proceedings for allegedly producing forged certificates and furnishing false information in the declaration submitted, the Madras High Court on Monday said imparting education has now become a lucrative business enabling entrepreneurs to make easy money.

There was no mechanism to check various malpractices by the institutions. Every year, new medical institutions were coming up like any other business enterprise, Justice K.K. Sasidharan has observed.

On July 26, 2010, the MCI conducted surprise verification at the Sri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Kancheepuram, a Deemed University, to ascertain the correctness of the observation made by the MCI’s inspection committee. Thereafter, the agency registered a case against the chairman of the Sri Balaji Education and Charitable Public Trust, which was managing the medical college and the vice-chancellor for allegedly manipulating records for obtaining extension of approval to admit students. Both were discharged from the case by the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, Egmore.

The MCI directed the petitioner M.K. Rajagopalan to appear before its Ethics Committee on June 29. A similar notice was issued to 26 faculty members. The petitioner appeared before the panel and submitted his reply stating that he had already been discharged by the criminal court and as such there was no basis for the panel to continue its proceedings.

The committee summoned Dr. Ajeet M. Gopchade, a faculty member, to produce the certificates and appear before it on August 23. This made the petitioner to challenge the show cause notice dated June 7 and the subsequent notice dated July 29.

Counsel contended that the matter related to the academic year 2010-11. The committee could not continue the proceedings even after expiry of two academic years from the date of initiation of the original proceedings. The CBI’s revision petition against the CMM’s order would not give authority to the Ethics Committee to proceed further.

Mr. Justice Sasidharan said the enquiry was essentially against faculty members for allegedly producing forged and fake document to make it appear that they were qualified and working as teachers in the college. Faculty members would be in a position to appear before the panel to plead they had not indulged in any kind of misconduct. The panel would look into the documents submitted by the faculty members and take a decision. By producing the documents and subjecting themselves to the proceedings before the committee, it could not be said that it would affect the petitioner before the criminal court.