Bombay HC junks govts differential weightage rule for in-service candidates; gives relief to doctor
Mumbai: Clarifying on the number of years completed service in tribal, difficult or rural areas for which the in-service quot aspirants could get additional marks for PG medical admission, the Bombay High Court has issued a clarification in its recent verdict.
During a recent hearing, the bench of Honourable Justice SC Gupte clarified that there was no cap on the number of years of completed bond service in tribal, difficult or rural areas for which the candidates seeking admission to PG medical courses through the in-service quota could get additional marks for admission.
The observation was based on a petition filed by Dr Abhinav Bhute, who had challenged the Government Resolution (GR) issued by the medical education department on March 19 last year, granting only 4 %of the additional weightage to in-service candidates who have rendered service in rural areas, instead of the 10% weightage given by the Medical Council of India (MCI).
Dr Bhute has served in rural areas for six years and accordingly sought 30% additional weightage last year. But when the department refused to give him the 30% weightage, he moved HC. In the petition, the counsel on behalf of the doctor pointed out that Maharashtra government has reserved 25℅ of the PG diploma and 25℅ of PG degree seats for in-service candidates.
As per the MCI guidelines, any government servant rendering his service in rural areas is entitled to 10-30 % additional marks over and above the marks scored in NEET. His petition states that even though he is entitled to 30 per cent additional marks as per MCI guidelines, but the State's policy is to grant only 4 % marks. It informs that for the BDS course, the State grants 30 per cent additional marks for candidate rendering service in tribal, difficult and rural areas. But the State has declined to grant an additional 30 % marks in favour of in-service candidates from rural areas.
Despite the HC's direction, the department has refused to give the 30% weightage to Dr Bhute, the counsel contended.
Earlier, based on the said contentions, the HC had imposed an interim stay the publication of the first selection list by the Maharashtra Common Entrance Test Cell (Maha CET Cell) which was supposed to release the list on April 24.
Now, at the recent hearing held on May 5th, assistant government pleader pointed out that the department had on March 19, 2019, issued a GR varying the weightage of marks to be given. It had decided to provide 10% weightage for rendering service in tribal areas, 7% weightage for rendering service in difficult areas, and 4% for rendering service in rural areas. She also pointed out that the scheme contemplates reckoning only three years of service for giving these additional marks to in-service candidates.
HT reports, that Justice Gupte, however, refused to accept the last contention.
The judge said that none of the GRs on the topic reckons only three years of service and held
"For each year of completed service, the in-service candidates are entitled to marks in accordance with the altered scheme of marks… It is accordingly clarified that the entire service, whatever be the length of such service, of in-service candidates is to be reckoned for allotting weightage of marks for postgraduate admissions."