In a landmark decision, the Supreme Court approved a quota for in-job doctors for admissions in post-graduate courses. The quota would be valid for all the government hospitals in the country. While hearing the petition moved by the doctors’ associations, the Constitution Bench said that there was no prohibition in the law against the state governments for their stand on providing such reservations to the in-service medical practitioners.

The Bench in the Apex Court ruled that the state governments have the authorization under the Constitution and the applicable entries under List II. This permission becomes important, especially when the Medical Council of India (MCI) lacks this authority.

Providing a special stand on such permissions, the Bench said that the states must lay down a condition making it mandatory for the beneficiary doctors to serve at least for 5 years in the hilly, rural, or tribal areas. Making its stand clear on the admission issues, the Bench clarified that no existing admission would be disturbed. The decision will apply only for the admissions in the time to come.

It is worth mentioning that some states had so far allowed the doctors may get a weightage as an incentive up to 10% of the marks that they would obtain every year of their service in challenging areas up to a maximum of 30 percent of marks that they might obtain in NEET.

In their batch petition in this move, the doctors had pleaded that they would prefer getting a quota in the PG admissions instead of getting incentive marks to the government doctors. With this ruling, the old demand of the prominent doctors’ associations has been fulfilled.