Maharashtra Announces 20 percent In-Service Reservation for PG Medical Admissions, IMA seeks Stay
Mumbai: Reinstating the in-service reservation in postgraduate medical admission, the Maharashtra State Government on Monday announced a 20 per cent quota for in-service doctors practising in the rural and tribal areas of the State.The in-service doctors serving the state for two years shall be able to avail the reservation benefits while taking admission to PG medical courses. Issuing...
Mumbai: Reinstating the in-service reservation in postgraduate medical admission, the Maharashtra State Government on Monday announced a 20 per cent quota for in-service doctors practising in the rural and tribal areas of the State.
The in-service doctors serving the state for two years shall be able to avail the reservation benefits while taking admission to PG medical courses. Issuing a Government Resolution in this regard, the Maha Government clarified, "From the academic year 2022-23, government approval is being given to reserve 20% seats for in-service candidates for admissions to PG medical and diploma courses in government and civic-run medical colleges in the state."
However the GR has also made it clear that the in-service candidates would not be awarded any extra marks for their work, and admissions would be conducted solely on the basis of their NEET-PG marks.
While this move will ensure that the in-service doctors will get edge in PG medical admissions, the Indian Medical Association (IMA), Maharashtra has sought a stay on implementation of the in-service reservation for this academic year.
Such an announcement comes from the Government around six months after the previous order by the Uddhav Thackeray Government announcing 25% In-service reservation.
Medical Dialogues had previously reported that with an aim to ensure availability of specialists in the rural and tribal areas, earlier this year, the Maharashtra Government had introduced 25 per cent in-service reservation in PG medical admissions in the State. Previously, the in-service candidates were also allowed to be granted 10 marks a year for their service. This way, they could stay ahead in the merit list by getting an additional 30 marks in their exams.
In order to avail the reservation benefits the in-service doctors were required to complete at least three years of service in the rural and tribal public healthcare centres.
As per the latest media report by the Times of India, now reinstating the in-service reservation in PG medical admissions, the new Government in Maharashtra has announced 20 per cent quota for in-service medical officers. While doctors who are serving the state for two years will be allowed to avail the in-service reservation benefits, the candidates would not be awarded any extra marks for their work. Admissions will be completely on the basis of their NEET-PG marks.
Speaking to TOI regarding the In-service reservation, a parent representative mentioned, "The announcement came late in the day. The quota is going to eat into the seats meant for the open category, and aspirants who were on the borderline and thought they would get a seat are at a huge loss. Choice-filling for the all-India quota is also closed now."
While commenting on this, the former head of the Directorate of Medical Education and Research Dr Pravin Shingare said, "In-service candidates used to apply under both categories of seats - they would vie for seats under the open category and for those under the quota set aside for them and that caused a lot of injustice for fresher and meritorious candidates. So the freshers went to court against the quota, following which it was abolished."
However, Maharashtra IMA is not happy with this "untimely and unanticipated" implementation of In-service reservation in PG medical admissions.
Writing to the State Education Minister, Girish Mahajan, IMA mentioned, "Government resolution for in service quota has been released on a short notice without prior intimation after the registration for all India counselling , Maharashtra State counselling and other open states has been declared over Qualified candidates who had an assurance of getting a government seat and have only paid deposit for the same are now in dilemma and panic due to the implementation of in service as it has led to uncertainty of their government seat and they cannot go back and revert the deposit for semi private and deemed colleges or edit the form for the same."
"As the round of all India quota is over, many students did not opt for DNB seats as well because they had assurance of getting a good seat through Maharashtra counseling. This untimely implementation and sudden introduction of in service has created a lot of uncertainty and anxiety in many such candidates," it further added.
Further referring to the delay in counselling, IMA added that "The counselling was delayed by 5 months and still there was no proper intimation of a 20 percentage reservation for in service candidates. If candidates would have been well informed they would have prepared their choice filling accordingly and participation in other states. This has lead to many meritorious candidates losing out on their seats because of the unfair and sudden policy implementation."
Therefore the association has requested for a stay on the implementation of in-service reservation for this academic year, and has requested the Minister for implementing the same in the next year instead.
"We request you to hear the grievances and stall the implementation for the academic year 2022-23 as the counselling process has already been started and the untimely implementation of such policy would mean meritorious candidates losing out on their seats and would be quite unjust.The in service quota can be implemented from the next academic year after prior intimation of the exam appearing candidates," read the letter by IMA.
TOI adds that a medical officer had earlier approached the Bombay HC praying for reinstatement of in-service quota. In his plea, the doctor had referred to the need for providing medical expertise in the rural and tribal belts of the State for addressing issues including malnutrition and child mortality.
Back then the HC had directed the Government for framing a policy and accordingly, the State in April had announced 25% in-service reservation for PG medical admissions.
Similarly, the in-service doctors in Maharashtra used to get 50% reservation of seats in diploma courses after MBBS till 2017. However, with reduced demands for the course, the reservation benefits got discontinued.
Barsha completed her MA from the University of Burdwan, West Bengal in 2018. Having a knack for Journalism she joined Medical Dialogues back in 2020. She mainly covers news about medico legal cases, NMC/DCI updates, medical education issues including the latest updates about medical and dental colleges in India. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.