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Posted at: Aug 24, 2018, 1:17 AM; last updated: Aug 24, 2018, 1:17 AM (IST)

Extend quota to private medical colleges: HC

Balwant Garg

Tribune News Service

Faridkot, August 23

In a decision impacting the reservation matrix of MBBS and BDS seats in private medical and dental colleges in the state, the Punjab and Haryana High Court on Thursday ordered that the reservation that is applicable to government institutes should extend to the private institutes as well.

There is absolutely no rationale as to why reservation should be restricted only to government institutes and not to the private ones, particularly, when the entire process flows from a centralised procedure and is based on government instructions, said the double Bench of the High Court while announcing its decision on five writ petitions, filed by five medical aspirant students.

In a petition filed in the High Court this month, the students claimed that while there is 1 per cent reservation quota for sportspersons and 1 per cent quota for children and grandchildren of terrorism-affected persons in government medical and dental colleges, but the same reservation is not applicable in private institutes, even though the admission process is routed through the government and is largely centralised.

Saying such an artificial distinction can only be sustained at the cost of violence to Article 14 of the Constitution, the High Court in its order, said the reservation that is applicable to government institutes shall extend to the private institutes as well.

In its order, the High Court said even the Baba Farid University of Health Sciences (BFUHS) — the nodal agency to conduct centralised counselling for all medical and dental colleges in the state — and the state government have offered no justification for the different reservation quota in the government and private medical and dental institutions. So such an artificial distinction is unsustainable.

While three government medical and two dental colleges in the state offer total 76 per cent reservation on all MBBS and BDS seats, this reservation in the five private medical and 13 dental colleges is 54 per cent.

During the pendency of these writ petitions, the High Court asked the BFUHS to protect five MBBS seats for these candidates in private medical colleges. Now the BFUHS has to make an extended counselling to make admission to these five protected seats as per the High Court orders. “We are waiting for the directions from the state government in view of the HC decision,” said Dr Raj Bahadur, Vice-Chancellor, BFUHS.


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