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
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.
“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.