The Supreme Court has observed that admissions to institutions of higher education in particular medical education should be based on merit and not reservations, and urged the central government to take objective steps in eliminating reservation in super speciality medical courses. Supreme Court has made this suggestion in the general interest of the country and for improving the standard of higher education and thereby improving the quality of available medical services to the people of India.
The Hon’ble Supreme Court echoed the same feeling as was done earlier in another case by Supreme Court itself and reiterated the aspirations of others so that authorities can objectively assess and approach the situation so that the national interest can become paramount. The earlier judgement of the Court had also suggested the Government:
“We hope and trust that the Government of India and the State Governments shall seriously consider this aspect of the matter without delay and appropriate guidelines shall be evolved by the Indian Medical Council so as to keep the Super Specialities in medical education unreserved, open and free.”
The Hon’ble Court also expressed its concern on the delay in addressing the issue and observed that fond hope has remained in the sphere of hope though there has been a progressive change. The Court also felt that said privilege remains unchanged, as if to compete with eternity.
The judgment came based on a batch petitions complaining about eligibility criteria for admissions to certain courses – DM (Doctor of Medicine) and MCh (Master of Chirurgiae)- in particular, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Tamil Nadu permitted only those domiciled in these states. This means that while candidates domiciled in these states can sit for exams in other states, students from other states are barred from taking exams in these states. The petitioners had challenged these provisions on ground of violations of right of equality and equal opportunity, which has been granted in Articles 14 and 16 of Constitution of India.