Kochi: Kerala High Court partly stayed a state government order directing the Commissioner for Entrance Examination to conduct admission to all seats, including NRI and management, in self-financing medical and dental colleges in the state.
Passing the order on a batch of petitions, a bench comprising Justices K Surendra Mohan and Mary Joseph permitted the colleges to go ahead with admission process for the management quota seats.
Petitioners — Kerala Private Medical College Management Association, Kerala Christian Professional College Managements’ Federation and individual managements — have challenged the government order.
The court rejected the contention of Advocate General C P Sudhakara Prasad that the government’s aim behind the impugned order was to allot seats directly from National Eligibility- cum Entrance Test (NEET) list to management quota to avoid corruption, capitation as well as to ensure transparency.
However, it said online application alone be considered for admission and the same should be uploaded to the professional course admission supervisory committee headed by Justice J M James.
Admission shall be started only after getting approval from the committee, the court said.
It directed the committee to ensure that admissions in the private medical and dental colleges were based on the comparative merit of the applicant.
Only those candidates who are included in the NEET list are eligible for applying for the courses, the court said and directed all private medical and dental colleges to forward their prospectus to the Justice James’ Committee to ensure transparency in the matter of admission.
The private college managements have assailed the impugned order as unconstitutional and claimed it was an infringement on certain rights guaranteed under the Constitution to private educational institutions in the country.
The government order had said admission to 50 per cent merit seats in these institutions would be made through the Kerala Entrance Examination 2016 and admission to 35 per cent management quota and 15 per cent NRI seats from NEET list.
Meanwhile health minister K K Shyalaja said government only wanted that admissions in all seats should be based on merit.
“The verdict is not a setback and government will not file an appeal, she told reporters here.
Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala said the verdict was a big blow to the government.