Mumbai: Feeling threatened about their autonomous status, deemed universities in the state have decided to take the Directorate of Medical Education and Research (DMER) back to the Supreme Court. The move comes in the light of the fact, that 85% seats in dental colleges are lying vacant this year, after the DMER challenged the High Court decision, regarding admissions to deemed universities; and was allowed to conduct admissions at deemed universities as well.
The 10 medical and dental institutes have expressed strong reservation about DMER’s proposal to the state’s Medical Education Department to bring deemed universities under the scope of the Admission Regulation Act for private institutes, as it would lead to them loosing their autonomous status.
“Why should we lose our autonomous status, which was given to institutes by the University Grants Commission (UGC)? We will use all the power to overturn this proposal,” said the Director of a deemed medical institute, preferring to remain anonymous.
Earlier this year, the Supreme Court made it amply clear, that all admissions to the medical and dental universities will have to be conducted as per the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) score. However, the President’s Ordinance in May allowed the Common Entrance Test (CET) to be applicable to government run medical and dental colleges. All other institutions were directed to follow the NEET rankings. Despite the Supreme Court’s recommendation for a common admission process, deemed universities took a stand to fight tooth and nail at Bombay High Court, to not let go of their autonomous status; and conduct their own admissions on the basis of NEET scores.
“The DMER challenged the HC’s decision in the SC and was allowed to conduct admissions to our seats. While medical seats have been filled up, 85% of seats in our dental institute are vacant. Never in the past 25 years have we faced such a situation. On what basis is DMER seeking full control of our institute?” said, Vice-Chancellor, Pravara Institute of Medical Sciences, Shashank Dalvi, Ahmednagar.
Dalvi has held the DMER responsible for innumerable dental seats lying vacant this year. This, after the body took over the admission process of deemed universities.
The DMER’s proposal seeking control over the admission process of deemed universities, is to be studied by the state’s judicial department.
“There have been several complaints of deemed institutes charging outrageous fees and also hiking the same every year and so, we have requested all institutes to be brought under similar Act in our state. The medical education department had forwarded our proposal to the law and judiciary department,” said Director, DMER, Dr Pravin Shingare.
He acknowledged the fact that the DMER was responsible for the current vacancies in deemed dental colleges of the state.
“It’ll be unfair, if the seats lapse, especially since there are so many students hoping to bag a seat in our institutes,” said Dalvi.
An extension is also to be sought by the Dental Council of India at the behest of Deemed Universities, from the Supreme Court, to fill the existent vacancies.