The medical education regulator has cancelled the admission of 778 MBBS students who joined private colleges in Puducherry last year for violating the Supreme Court’s guidelines.
Despite the Supreme Court restoring NEET in 2016, states continue to come up with arbitrary admission norms.
All the seven private medical colleges in the Union territory “haven’t demonstrated any evidence of fairness and transparency in the admission process...” the Medical Council of India said in a September 7, 2017 letter, cancelling the admissions.
HT has a copy of the order that came on the complaint of Puducherry lieutenant governor Kiran Bedi, who said merit had been sacrificed for money.
Bedi got complaints from parents alleging fraud and ordered a probe which found that of the 1,200 students who joined the bachelor of medicine, bachelor of surgery, or MBBS, in 2016, 778 were admitted overlooking the top court’s directives on the national eligibility-cum-entrance test (NEET).
The state-run Indira Gandhi Medical College, which has 150 seats, is in the clean as it followed the counselling guidelines.
The MCI order highlights the difficulties in cleaning up medical education, a lucrative business, in India. Some colleges continue to set aside norms for money or favour, leaving out deserving students. States have come up with arbitrary guidelines this year as well, as reported by HT , raising questions over the fairness of the process.
While restoring NEET in 2016, the top court ordered all states to designate a counselling authority to prepare a list of successful candidates.
Puducherry, too, set up a centralised admission committee (Centac) but the seven private colleges admitted students directly, ignoring the panel.
Panchapakesan Ganesan, whose daughter was denied admission, alleged that 778 admissions -- 770 under all India quota and eight in state quota – were made fraudulently.
President of Puducherry UT All Centac Students Parents Association M Narayanassamy wrote to Bedi, who asked a committee led by a retired judge, Chitra Venkatraman, to look into the charges.
Venkatraman’s report said the entire exercise violated the Supreme Court order, as students with high NEET scores were denied admission with money taking precedence over marks. “At the hands of the private medical colleges, merit has become a casualty,” Bedi said in a letter to MCI. ‘WHY SPARE COLLEGES?’ The parents association has questioned the MCI’s failure to act against the erring colleges.
“I am surprised why no action has been recommended by the MCI against colleges? I feel disappointed as we didn’t intend to destroy the career of students,” Narayanasamy said.