SC must break off with Lodha panel, says Centre

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July 12, Wednesday, the Centre refused to grant recognition to 23 private medical colleges by the Supreme Court-appointed Justice R M Lodha oversight committee. Following this, the Centre also sought its disbanding. To justify the move and demand, the Centre says the National Medical Commission Bill (NMCB) was in the offing to regulate the field.

To disband the Lodha panel on medical education, additional solicitor general Maninder Singh put up a plea in front of a bench of Justices – J Chelameswar, R K Agrawal and Abdul Nazeer. He came up with the argument of the  controversy relating to grant of recognition to 23 medical colleges despite the Medical Council of India (MCI) rejecting to entertain their pleas due to the lacking infrastructure.

As per Singh, there were 34 medical colleges under the scanner. But the oversight committee granted them conditional permission to admit students, a situation unknown in medical education, he conveyed.

Despite this, it cannot be denied that the government granted conditional approval to the 34 medical colleges on their submitting a bank guarantee of Rs 2 crore each accompanied by an undertaking that they would rectify the deficiencies, pointing out arguments in favour of the Lodha panel.

In spite of the situation, 32 of these colleges are still found to have not worked on rectifying the deficiencies by the inspector, says Singh,”The oversight committee still decided to grant permission to 23 of the 32 colleges.”

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