New Delhi, Aug 31: A five-judge Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court on Monday held that the Medical Council of India (MCI) does not have any power to make any reservation for in-service candidates to postgraduate medical courses in any particular state.
The top court said the state governments are competent to devise a separate channel of entry for in-service doctors.
The top court also suggested the candidates should serve at least five years in rural and hilly regions.
A bench comprising Justices Arun Mishra, Indira Banerjee, Vineet Saran, M.R. Shah and Aniruddha Bose observed that the MCI is a creation of a statute under Entry 66 of List 1 of the Constitution and its job is to maintain the standards of medical education.
The bench held that the MCI providing for reservation for in-service candidates in PG Medical Courses are ultra vires to the Medical Council of India Act.
The top court, however, clarified that the judgement will only apply prospectively and it will not affect any admissions already made.
The bench also observed that the state governments can make regulations to provide reservation for in-service doctors in PG medical course.
The bench also expressed gratitude to all counsels for helping the Constitution Bench to decide the matter through virtual court.