New Delhi: The Supreme Court paved the way for the admission of a student suffering from thalassaemia in the MBBS course in Chhattisgarh.
The court’s order came during the hearing of a plea of a 19-year-old woman suffering from the blood disorder, claiming that she falls under the category of persons with benchmark disability as prescribed under the provisions of the Right of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016.
“As far as the present petitioner is concerned, she shall be admitted in the MBBS course, after due counseling within a week,” a bench of Justices Dipak Misra, A M Khanwilkar and M M Shantanagoudar said.
MCI counsel, however, left it to the discretion of the court.
The bench had earlier directed the Chhattisgarh government to constitute a medical board to ascertain whether the petitioner would fall under the the ambit of the Act.
In pursuance of courts order, the Directorate of Medical Education of Chhattisgarh filed a report opining that the woman was suffering from Thalassemia disease.
The court had earlier observed that it was the duty of every institution to extend a helping hand to the disabled.
The counsel for the petitioner had earlier said that her case should be considered as a person with the disability for the purpose of admission to any medical stream.
He had contended that under the Act, five per cent of the seats for the persons with benchmark disability, someone with not less than 40 per cent disability, are required to be reserved.
The bench had said that the “statutory command” of five per cent reservation for benchmark disability, “has to be followed in letter and spirit”.
Thalassaemia, an inherited blood disorder, falls under the category of benchmark disability subsequent to the 2016 amended Act.