HC upholds eligibility norms for postgraduate medical courses

CHANDIGARH: The Punjab and Haryana High Court has upheld the eligibility conditions for candidates aspiring for postgraduate medical courses by refusing to term as arbitrary the incentivisation scheme formulated by Punjab for in-service doctors.

Saurabh Malik

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 25

The Punjab and Haryana High Court has upheld the eligibility conditions for candidates aspiring for postgraduate medical courses by refusing to term as arbitrary the incentivisation scheme formulated by Punjab for in-service doctors.

The scheme provides reservation of seats in postgraduate courses for doctors, who earn incentive marks by working in government hospitals in remote areas. Dubbing the eligibility conditions as arbitrary, a petitioner-doctor had claimed that the scheme of incentivisation was applicable to doctors completing four full years in “very difficult areas”, six full years in “difficult areas” or five full years with two in “most difficult” and three in “difficult areas”.

The Bench of Justice Mahesh Grover and Justice Rajbir Sehrawat asserted that a careful examination of the regulations would make it abundantly clear that the limit of incentivisation had been pegged down to 30 per cent of marks obtained in NEET. Evidently, primacy had been given to a candidate’s performance in the entrance examination — NEET with some leeway to in-service candidates, who had served the purposes of the state by rendering their services in remote, difficult, very difficult and most difficult or rural areas.

“Whether a person has served six, five or four years will make no difference in view of the year-wise benefit pegged at 10 per cent for a year with a cap of 30 per cent determined by the Medical Council of India.

“In no way we find this to be arbitrary, particularly, when the power of the state to frame a policy of incentivisation to in-service candidates is not in question,” the Bench added.

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