Express News Service
CHENNAI: The Madras High Court on Friday barred the Centre from allocating 50 % of the super speciality seats in Tamil Nadu medical colleges until the State government or the petitioners (in-service candidates) get a clarification from the Supreme Court whether the apex court’s order allowing the State to provide 50% in-service quota in 2021-22 would apply to 2022-23 too.
The court granted ten days time to the State government and the petitioners to approach the Supreme Court to seek clarification.
Justice R Suresh Kumar, while disposing of the petitions filed by two in-service doctors attached to the government medical college in Dindigul, said this court is of the view that the stand taken by the Centre has got some substance. Therefore, it has to be accepted.
“However, it is open to the State and the petitioners to go to the Supreme Court to seek clarification as to the continuity of its order passed last year with respect to fill 50% super speciality seats as per TN government’s GO (Ms) No 462 for the academic year 2022-23,” he said.
In the meantime, the judge allowed the Centre to go ahead with the counselling as scheduled for 50% seats if it wants, but no final allotment order should be given to any candidates.
The petitions, filed by Dr K Sri Hari Prashanth and Dr G Methun Senthur pertain to admission to in-service candidates in super specialty courses in the government medical colleges in Tamil Nadu for 2022-23.
Their counsel G Sankaran recalled that in-service quota was not allowed, as per orders of the Supreme Court for 2020-21. However, the Madras High Court ordered the provision of the quota for 2021-22. It was
challenged before the Supreme Court unsuccessfully, he said.
However, the DGHS issued proceedings on October 27, 2022, addressed to deans and principals of super speciality institutes across the country for conducting common counselling for 100% super speciality seats at the national level.
Accordingly, the Centre issued orders for common counselling for 100% of seats without reference to the TN govt’s GO for a 50% quota for in-service candidates.
The petitioners prayed for restraining the respondents from filling up 50% of seats coming under the State for 2022-23 without reference to the GO for the quota.
Tamil Nadu Advocate General (AG) R Shanmugasundaram submitted that the Supreme Court had not stayed the State government’s GO for in-service quota.
However, the counsel for the Centre contended that the Supreme Court’s order was only for the year 2021-22 and not for the following years; so, the State government should get a clarification from the Supreme Court.