SUPREME COURT DISALLOWS RESERVATION FOR IN-SERVICE DOCTORS IN SUPER SPECIALITY MEDICAL COURSES FOR 2020-2021
A Three Judge Bench of the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India comprising of Justices Nageswara Rao, Hemant Gupta and Ajay Rastogi passed an Interim Order dated 27.11.2020 in the case of Dr. Prerit Sharma & Ors. v. Dr. Bilu (Civil Appeal Nos. 3841-3843 of 2020 arising out of S.L.P. (C) Nos. 13670-13672 of 2020), thereby not allowing #reservation for in-service #doctors in Super Specialty Medical Courses for 2020-21, on the ground that such reservation will be detrimental to the interest of other competent and meritorious doctors.
In the present case, Dr. Bilu B.S. had filed Writ Petition No.20256 of 2020 in the High Court of Kerala, seeking implementation of reservation of 40 per cent of the seats in Super Specialty Medical Courses for in-service Doctors.
The Kerala High Court passed an Order dated 05.10.2020 , thereby allowing counselling for admission to Super Specialty Medical Courses, after taking into consideration 40 per cent reservation for in-service doctors. Aggrieved by the said Order dated 05.10.2020, a Writ Appeal was filed by the Respondents before the Division Bench of the High Court of Kerala.
The Division Bench of High Court of Kerala passed an Order dated 07.10.2020 and directed the concerned authorities to implement the provisions of the Service Quota Act, 2008 (The Act) which provides that 40 per cent of the seats shall be reserved for in-service doctors seeking admission to the Super Specialty Medical Courses.
Thereafter, the Petitioners therein had challenged the said Order dated 07.10.2020 of the Division Bench of High Court of Kerala before the Supreme Court. The Petitioners are Doctors who hold a post-graduate degree in Medicine and have qualified the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET), 2020 for admission to Super Specialty Medical Courses for the academic year 2020-2021. The said NEET Super Specialty Examination was conducted on 15.09.2020 and the results for the same were declared on 25.09.2020. A Counselling Scheme was issued by the Medical Counselling Committee for 100 per cent All India Quota for NEET Super Specialty DM/MCH DMB 2020-2021 in which it was clearly specified that there shall be no reservation for Super Specialty Medical Courses.
The Apex Court has made the following observations in this case:
- That the provisions for reservation for in-service doctors under the said Act were earlier not implemented for the years 2017-2019 in the State of Kerala.
- That the process for admission to Super Specialty Medical Courses had started on 03.08.2020 and it was made clear that there would be no reservation to Super Specialty Medical Courses.
- Furthermore, as the admission process was already in its final stage, it would be inappropriate to allow reservation for in-service Doctors.
- That with reference to one of the Government Orders dated 07.11.2020 issued by the Government of Tamil Nadu, which provided reservation of 50 per cent seats for in-service doctors; the Supreme Court held that such reservation should not be allowed as it would be prejudicial to the interests of other competent and meritorious doctors.
Thus, the Apex Court passed an Interim Order dated 27.11.2020 and held that counselling for admissions to Super Specialty Medical Courses for the Academic Year 2020-2021 should proceed without providing for reservations to in-service doctors for the current Academic Year. Further, the Appeal has been listed for hearing in February, 2021.
The Indian Lawyer & Allied Services
Senior Legal Associate
The Indian Lawyer& Allied Services
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