Maharashtra: Three senior doctors attached to Grant Medical College have recently pointed fingers at the selection process of examiners which conduct MD examinations. These doctors are also attached to JJ Group of hospitals. The doctors have alleged that the medical college hospital discriminates between full time and honorary faculty members when appointing invigilators for examinations. They usually give preference to full time faculty members. The allegation also hints of a possible advantage extended to some students.
The name of the three doctors are Wiqar Shaikh (Professor), Hemant Gupta (Associate Professor) and PS Tampi (Assistant Professor). They are honorary faculty members providing their services on a regular contractual basis. While they allege that only full time faculty members are given a chance to be an examiner, till date, there is one of them-Dr Shaikh, who has been given a chance as invigilator only one time. This happened in 2015 and this year he has not been appointed again.
The three doctors have raised this issue as they feel that it is a matter of prestige for them now. They have also written to the Maharashtra Governor, who is also Chancellor of the Maharashtra University of Health Sciences (MUHS) in Nashik concerning the matter. MUHS holds the graduate and PG exams in the state.
“We feel that it is unfair to other post graduate teachers like us to be deprived of becoming examiners. We are unhappy that one of us (Dr Wiqar Shaikh) who was appointed as examiner in 2015 has not been reappointed this year, despite the fact that a fair examination was conducted, with no complaints from either the students or university,” the letter stated.
Dr Tampi said to Mid-day newspaper that, “Whenever it come to examinations, we honorary doctors are given step motherly treatment, as the full-timers get appointed as examiners. We are expected to render our services for teaching and treating patients, but are being deprived of an opportunity to become university examiners.”
As a further evidence to their allegation, the letter also mentions about one full time doctor- Dr V K Joglekar, professor and HOD medicine — being selected many times. Dr Shaikh implied that Dr Joglekar has been an examiner for over 20 times. If the examiners are not changed on a rotation basis, then there are chances he/she might favour their own group of students during the examination.
Dr Joglekar, however has implied that the allegation is baseless. It was only in 2010 and 2011 when he was appointed as the examiner, followed by 2014 and 2015 again. His selection was done on a rotational basis as per the MCI guidelines. An appointment letter has been given to him this year too, however, he is not too keen this time, citing hampering of schedule to examine patients and teaching students, he further implied.
The controller of examinations at MUHS, Dr KD Chavan said to Mid-day that, “We follow the Medical Council of India’s guidelines and the board selects the examiners for not more than two consecutive years, on a rotation basis. I will have to look into this matter.”
MUHS Vice Chancellor and Professor, Dr Deelip Mhaisekar said, “As per the guidelines of the MCI, the board selects examiners on the basis of seniority and merit. In some cases, the head of the department becomes the examiner by default.” He also hit back at the complainants and said, “I am surprised as to how they learnt that their names are not in the list of examiners, especially when the examination is scheduled two months from now. Moreover, how did they learn about the appointment of Dr Joglekar? Under the University Act, examination issues are confidential and cannot be discussed or leaked out to anybody.”