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In the fiasco surrounding admission to PG medical colleges in Maharashtra, the Supreme Court today directed the state to conduct a fresh counselling process.
The Court passed directions ordering the State of Maharashtra and the Common Entrance Test (CET) Cell to complete this process by June 14. The order also states that no more petitions or applications with respect to admissions to PG medical colleges shall be entertained by any other court.
The Vacation Bench of Justices Indu Malhotra and MR Shah was hearing a petition filed by a number of students who were aggrieved by the counselling process. They contended that the required procedure stipulates three rounds of counselling. However, only two rounds were conducted by the State of Maharashtra.
Further, since no fresh counselling took place after the deletion of the Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) quota, the aggrieved students missed out on a chance to secure seats in better colleges.
The Court pulled up the State of Maharashtra for not carrying out a fresh counselling process in consonance with the previous orders of the Court. Justice Shah chided counsel for the state Nishant Katneshwarkar, and said that the entire issue was created as a result of the actions of the State of Maharashtra itself. Justice Shah said,
“Why don’t you streamline the entire admission system? State of Maharashtra is solely responsible for this entire situation…You knew the judgment of the Nagpur Bench of the Bombay High Court and yet you proceeded with implementing the EWS quota in this year.”
The Court expressed its displeasure over the fact that no counselling process took place after May 9 and no fresh counselling took place after the Court’s order directing deletion of EWS quota and conversion of the seats to the general category.
The Court went on to direct the State of Maharashtra and CET cell to put out advertisements in newspapers with wide circulation in Maharashtra stating that a fresh counselling process for admissions to PG medical colleges would take place. This ad has to specifically state that this would be the final process of counselling.
The final round of counselling will have to be conducted by the CET cell with physical verification, the Court added. No more admissions on the issue will be entertained by any Court hereon forward.
The petitioners were represented by Senior Counsel Meenakshi Arora assisted by Advocates Garvesh Kabra with Advocates AH Lohiya, Pooja Kabra and Swatilina Barik. The applicants in the case, that is the students belonging to the EWS quota were represented by Senior Counsel Huzefa Ahmadi and Advocate Aljo K Joseph.
Last week, the Court directed the Maharashtra government to follow its order regarding the admission process “in true spirit”.
Read the Order: