Chennai: The Madras High Court imposed a cost of Rs one crore each on the TN government and the MCI for their failures in securing 50 per cent of the PG medical seats from private colleges against the state quota.
Justice N Kirubakaran said the the “exemplary cost” has been been imposed on the government and the Medical Council of India only to make the authorities follow the law especially in discharge of their public functions.
Any negligence or default in following the law as provided in the medical seat sharing regulations would affect many meritorious students and their valuable right to education as guaranteed by the Constitution, he said.
Admission for these seats should be made through the centralised common counselling by the state on the basis of the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) merit list, the judge said in a 135-page order on two petitions.
The judge also set aside the admissions made against the NRI quota by the states private medical institutions, barring the minority ones.
Justice Kirubakaran further directed these institutions to surrender all their seats, including 15 per cent of the NRI quota, for the centralised common counselling.
The petitioners, including Dr M Kamaraj, had sought a direction to the authorities to appropriate 50 per cent of seats in the PG degree and diploma courses from non- governmental colleges and formulation of a methodology for sharing of seats.
Lambasting the MCI, the judge said right from year 2000 when the seat sharing regulation was framed, the body had not taken any effort to oversee its implementation.
“The reason is obvious, its only to help the private players. It is also an instance of malice,” he said directing the MCI to pay the cost of Rs one crore to the Spastics Society of Tamil Nadu, an institute for differently-abled people.
He said mere framing of regulations by MCI was not enough and it had a duty to oversee that the such rules framed with the approval of the Central government was followed by all concerned.
Pulling up the state government, the judge said the interest of the state, especially, that of the deserving and meritorious students had been affected due top non- appropriation of the 50 per cent seats.
“There is a wanton failure on the part of the successive state governments in this regard,” he said.
The elected governments which should be responsible and are expected to act in the interest of the public have not done their duty properly, the judge said.
He directed the state government to pay the cost of Rs one crore to the Archaeological Survey of India toward ongoing excavations at Keezhadi village in Sivaganga district, where findings had indicated existence of an ancient civilisation dating back to the 2nd century BC.
The judge made it clear that minority institutions need not share 50 per cent of their seats with the state government except voluntarily.
He quashed the state government prospectus for common counselling to PG degrees / diploma courses in deemed universities for 2017-18 session as it does not appropriate 50 per cent the state quota seats.
He ordered that all details, including the availability of speciality seats and complete fee structure should be published on the website of admission authority.
The judge directed the central and state governments and the MCI to notify all decisions and procedures related to admissions well in advance from the next year onwards in order to avoid confusion and litigation.
The judge posted the matter to June 12 for reporting compliance towards payment of cost.