The Supreme Court today agreed to suggestions that the vacant post-graduate seats in private unaided medical colleges could be filled up as per the order of merit in the All-India National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) list.
A bench of Justices A M Khanwilkar and Indu Malhotra said this while hearing a matter of Uttar Pradesh during which the Medical Council of India (MCI) said that almost 41.95 percent of post-graduate medical seats for the academic year 2018-2019 in private unaided medical colleges in the state have remained vacant.
Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Pinky Anand, who appeared for the Centre, suggested to the bench that “a similar dispensation can be followed in other states, if they so desire, while ensuring that the cut-off date of May 31, 2018 is strictly adhered to”.
“We agree with this suggestion,” the bench said and disposed of the plea filed by the UP unaided medical colleges welfare association.
The ASG and MCI’s counsel assured the apex court that its order would be forthwith published on the official websites of MCI, Medical Counselling Committee and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
Earlier during the hearing, the MCI counsel told the bench that since the cut-off date of May 18 was already over, the Director General of Medical Education of Uttar Pradesh must take the responsibility of allotting the seats to students from the NEET merit list in respective colleges by May 31.
“We find this suggestion to be most appropriate and also assuage the grievance of the private medical colleges and open up new opportunity to the aspiring candidates in the merit list who otherwise could not secure admission in other medical colleges,” the bench noted in its order.
The top court accepted the MCI’s suggestions and asked the Director General of Medical Education of Uttar Pradesh to take immediate steps in this regard while ensuring that the cut-off date of May 31, 2018 was adhered to in its letter and spirit.
The bench also made it clear “that in the guise of recommending names of candidates to private colleges, the candidate who has already secured admission elsewhere cannot be permitted to resign from the concerned college to avail of the opportunity under the stated dispensation.” Appearing for the MCI, counsel Gaurav Sharma said the situation had arisen because of high fee being charged by the private medical colleges.