Unqualified medical practitioners barred

HC order quashes GO exempting registration for traditional medicine practitioners

October 15, 2020 06:23 pm | Updated July 13, 2021 09:20 am IST - Kozhikode

The Kerala government can no longer permit people without qualification to practice traditional medicine or ‘paramparya vaidyam’, naturopathy or any other forms of alternative medicine.

This follows a Kerala High Court order on October 14, which quashed government orders exempting registration for unqualified practitioners. The order termed a certain provision that gave powers to the authorities to do so as ‘unconstitutional.’

Raju Thomas, president, and Sadath Dinakar, general secretary, Ayurveda Medical Association of India (AMAI), said in a release on Thursday that their organisation had legally challenged the government order issued in 2011 allowing unqualified people to practice traditional medicine.

The court pointed out that the orders issued by the State government “with respect to the exemption from registration by invoking the powers conferred under the 1st proviso to Section 38 of the Travancore-Cochin Medical Practitioners (TCMP) Act, 1953, is repugnant to the provisions of the Central Act of 1970” and was ‘unconstitutional.’

The Division Bench said that the order providing registration to unqualified practitioners of naturopathy and other alternative medicines were in conflict with the provisions of the Central Act, orders of the Government of India, and the guidelines specified. The court also struck down the first proviso to Section 38 of the TCMP Act, 1953.

The AMAI functionaries said that the High Court order was against the backdrop of a Supreme Court order in 2017 which said that people who are not qualified and not registered themselves with the respective medical councils should not be allowed to practice medicine.

Those who violate the law are liable to be punished by one year in jail or ₹5 lakh as fine, or both, they added.

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