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High Court refuses to strike down MCI regulation on disability

Court observed that MCI had framed regulations as it had better knowledge of the issue than the court.

Bombay: The Bombay High Court is reported to have dismissed a petition seeking the removal of regulation 9 (1) (a) of the Medical Council of India’s Postgraduate Medical Regulations 2000, which disallows any student from continuing postgraduate studies, if she/he suffers from more than 70 per cent lower body disability. A group of disabled students had filed a bunch of petitions seeking court redress on the issue. Their petition challenged the rule, on the grounds that modern technology equipped them to conduct activities like normal people.

Pooja Thorat, Advocate for the students, while praying for removal of the regulation 9 (1) (a) of the Postgraduate Medical Regulations 2000, defined the rule as ‘discriminatory’ leading to becoming a disadvantage for the medical students.

Sub clause 9(1)(a) reads

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3% seats of the annual sanctioned intake capacity shall be filled up by candidates with locomotory disability of lower limbs between 50% to 70%. Provided that in case any seat in this 3% quota remains unfilled on account of unavailability of candidates with locomotory disability of lower limbs between 50% to 70% then any such unfilled seat in this 3% quota shall be filled up by persons with locomotory disability of lower limbs between 40% to 50% – before they are included in the annual sanctioned seats for General Category candidates.

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“Many disabled persons are able to undertake normal activities using prosthetic s and hence the MCI rule is unreasonable and in  violation of Article 14 of the Constitution of India and should be struck down,” pleaded Ms Thorat.

The court however, expressed its inability to take a decision on the ruling, as it deemed the Medical Council of India (MCI),  the appropriate decision maker in this regard, stating it had better knowledge on the issue. The court however, did not disallow the petitioners from going ahead  with their education, as they had invested a couple of years in it already.


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5 comment(s) on High Court refuses to strike down MCI regulation on disability

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  1. Extremely saddened to hear this. I during my residency suffered from a road accident leading to RT brachial plexus injury and fracture femur n tibia leading to permanent disability (79℅). However I have cleared my MD general medicine despite the disability in first attempt. Now I\’m interested in studying for superspeciality in branches that require less dexterity like ( rheumatology, Endocrinology) however got to know that I would not be eligible for the same according to MCI rules. MCI is discriminating the disabled students and should ammend such outdated rules.

  2. I am a totally blind person, and I am working as a general manager for a superspeciality hospital.
    many doctors/ hospital administrators contact me for my advices.
    MCI should lookinto this problem and should help students to work along the mainstream.

  3. Sad. rather than disability percentage, each case should be considered on merit of ability of student to do the course meaningfully, rather than percentage of disability. with same level of disability one may out perform the other so restricting any activity based on percentage of disability is to live in archaic times. My secretary is 100% totally blind and with good education. training and current voice activated technologies, manages all correspondence/internet/email/ phone calls etc and is as good and as bad as all other secretaries on the same job! MCI needs to relook and also take into cognisance the new disability bill

  4. user
    Dr C V Raghuveer December 27, 2016, 4:08 pm

    Well said Subhadra. I fully agree with you.

  5. user
    Dr C V Raghuveer December 27, 2016, 4:07 pm

    I fully agree with Subhadra. I had a student with both lower limbs afflicted with polio. He did very well despite the disability. Another student had had one eye removed due to retinoblastoma in childhood. She became a successful gynecologist and could perform all the procedures which others could do with equal dexterity. Just because some one is disabled, we can not take it for granted that he/she is useless. In fact among the able bodeid many of them are just hopeless.