SC invalidates domicile rule for PG medical quota seats

State has to re-publish calendar of events

The Supreme Court on Wednesday declared invalid a Karnataka government condition restricting postgraduate admissions for medical and dental government quota seats to students with minimum 10 years domicile in the State.

‘Modify info bulletin’

In an 18-page judgment by a Bench of Justices Arun Mishra and U.U. Lalit, the SC directed Karnataka to amend and modify the information bulletin jointly issued by the State Directorate of Medical Education and Karnataka Examinations Authority on March 10.

The court ordered the State to re-publish the calendar of events in terms of the judgment and complete the entire process within the timeline stipulated by the regulatory authorities.

Plea by 44 doctors

The judgment was based on a petition filed by 44 doctors, who did their MBBS/BDS courses from Karnataka and have cleared the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test for Post Graduation (NEET-PG) 2018 examination with high merit and are aspiring for admission to PG courses in the State.

The court said that the domicile condition of 10 years bars even students who completed their MBBS and BDS courses from colleges in Karnataka to compete for government quota seats. “We hold Clause 4.1 of the Information Bulletin (PGET-2018) to be invalid to the extent it disqualifies petitioners and similarly situated candidates who completed their MBBS/BDS degree courses from colleges situated in Karnataka from competing for admission to postgraduate medical/dental courses in government medical colleges and against government quota seats in non-governmental institutions,” Justice Lalit, who wrote the verdict, held.

State’s argument

Karnataka government argued that the as per the eligibility conditions, only candidates of Karnataka origin could compete for admission to 50% government seats in government colleges and against government quota seats in private colleges. It submitted that these conditions were “stipulated inorder to ensure that the State’s requirement of skilled human resource is met with”. The State reasoned that the Post-Graduate Medical Education Regulation, 2000, of the Medical Council of India (MCI) does not prohibit the State from stipulating eligibility conditions for PG courses.

The MCI, however, referred to past judgments of the Supreme Court to argue that the “preference based on domicile was violative of the principle of equality”.

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Printable version | Apr 4, 2020 11:55:15 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/sc-invalidates-domicile-rule-for-pg-medical-quota-seats/article23437970.ece

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