Delhi HC bench rejects Gouri Institute of Medical Sciences appeal; upholds MCI Denial for MBBS seats
Two months ago, the single bench of Justice Anu Malhotra had upheld the MCI report pointing out various deficiencies at the medical college and dismissed the appeal filed by the institute against it.
The medical college was granted permission for an intake of 150 students in the MBBS course in 2016 for a period of one year, 2016-17. The institute was also directed that the next batch of MBBS students for the academic year 2017-18 would be admitted in the medical college only after obtaining the permission of the Central Government and fulfilling the mandatory conditions.
However, in 2017 the medical college was debarred by Central Government from admitting MBBS students for 2017-18 and 2018-19 academic session stating that admission can only take place after obtaining the permission of the Central Government for renewal. Following this, the medical college moved a formal application for the renewal for the academic year 2019-20.
Thereafter, an inspection of the institute was conducted by the MCI. The assessment report submitted by the MCI noted deficiencies of teaching staff, resident doctors and infrastructure of the medical college and hospital, wherein out of the required capacity of 360 UG hostel, 210 was available and 150 was deficient while residents hostel and residential quarters for Non-teaching staff were 100% deficient.
In clarification of the same, the medical college wrote to the council mentioning factual details and documents seeking re-evaluation and granted of a fair chance for inspection, as it has been running with just one batch of MBBS students admitted in the academic year 2016-17, thereby suffering great hardship and financial losses for the last two years.
Thereafter, in verification compliance report for the deficiency of teaching faculty of 18.8% and deficiency of residents of 21.2%; a dissent note was put forth by the medical college, clarifying that the deficiencies had been considered by the assessors and only one deficiency (Associate Professor in the Department of Radiology) existed and all other deficiencies as pointed out during the previous assessment had been rectified to the satisfaction of the assessors.
The Director of Medical Education, Department of Health & Family Welfare of the Government of West Bengal forwarded the appeal of the medical college and requested MCI to take necessary action regarding the grant of permission for the academic year 2019- 20. However, the Council informed DME that the council could not consider the representation in regard to the renewal of permission for admission of the 4th Batch of 150 MBBS students for the academic session 2019-20 at that stage as the last date for the academic year 2019-20 was already over.
In response, the medical college moved the court contending that the Minimum Standards Requirement for the 4th Renewal is very high in comparison to the 3rd Renewal requirement, for which it had to develop the infrastructures of both the college and the hospital up to the recognition level requirements and thus, the admission for the academic session 2019-20 was extremely crucial for the medical college.
However, the medical college's plea was dismissed by the HC citing that the deficiencies that had been pointed out in the case being a deficiency of 18.8% for the faculty strength and 21.2% for the resident doctors' strength for the renewal of the 4th Batch of 150 MBBS students for the academic year 2019-20 cannot be overlooked and cannot pale into insignificance.
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Aggrieved, the medical college filed a Letters Patent Appeal (LPA) with the HC. On the shortage of faulty reported in MCI's assessment, the medical college contended that the requirement should be calculated of the faculty members and residents only on the basis of the 150 students.
Chief Justice Hari Shankar, after hearing the counsels for both sides at length and looking to the deficiencies pointed out by the Medical Council of India refused to accept the contention of the medical college and observed—
It cannot be said that the faculty members who are present in the first academic year, are in proportionate with 150 students and, therefore, no additional faculty members are required. It ought to be kept in mind that year after year in the study of MBBS course, more subjects are required to be taught. Consequently, for the clinical subjects, there is a requirement of laboratory and other requirements for which also more faculty members for the next academic years are also required and hence always composite requirements are to be given by this appellant for the faculty members as well as for the resident doctors.
…If the first batch has reached to the fourth year, then all the faculty members and residents as pointed out by the Medical Council of India, ought to have been employed by this appellant. Thus, the requirement of the faculty members and residents cannot be calculated only on the basis of 150 students but it ought to be calculated on the basis of all the years' requirement, the faculty members and residents must be available.
The judge held that the aspect of the faculty deficiencies had been properly appreciated by the apex Medical Council as well as the Single Judge.
On the submission of the medical college that, as no intake of students was permitted for the academic years 2017-18 & 2018-19, the academic year 2019-20 should be treated as the second batch and not the fourth batch; the bench refused to agree.
In advancing this submission, the he ignores two facts, viz. that (i) the batch of students admitted in 2016-17 are in its fourth year in 2019-20, and (ii) the approval granted to the appellant, in 2016-17, was to a scheme, and not to a batch. This scheme was composite, covering five years, and required incremental enhancement of facilities and equipment. The appellant having failed to comply, no fault can be found with the decision of the MCI.
In its decision, the Delhi HC upheld the decision made by the MCI and the single bench while dismissing the present LPA—
We are in full agreement with the reasons given by the learned Single Judge in the judgment and order dated 30th August, 2019. We see no reason to take any other view than what has been taken by the learned Single Judge and there is no substance in the appeal and the same is dismissed.
Both the cut-off date for granting permission which is 31st May, 2019, have gone and for admission of the students i.e. 31st August, 2019 has also gone. The prayer in the writ petition of the petitioner, as also the communication dated 18th May, 2019 impugned in the writ petition, are specific to the academic year 2019-2020. The writ petition has, therefore, effectively been rendered infructuous. Hence also, we see no reason to entertain this Letters Patent Appeal. Hence, there is no substance in the in the LPA which is hereby dismissed.
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Garima joined Medical Dialogues in the year 2017 and is currently working as a Senior Editor. She looks after all the Healthcare news pertaining to Medico-legal cases, MCI/DCI decisions, Medical Education issues, government policies as well as all the news and updates concerning Medical and Dental Colleges in India. She is a graduate from Delhi University. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org Contact no. 011-43720751 To know about our editorial team click here