Delhi High Court has rejected the plea seeking a direction to be issued to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences to postpone the exams for post graduate (PG) courses.
While acknowledging that there's a strong need for AIIMS to augment its capacity by adding more junior doctors on their rolls in the present scenario, the Single Bench of Justice Jayant Nath noted that while conducting the exams, AIIMS will be bound by all advisories/guidelines regarding precautions to be taken for these gatherings as prescribed and as per usual medical norms.
The order has come in a writ petition asking the court to quash the order dated 01/06/20 by AIIMS wherein it has fixed the date of 11.06.2020 for the PG entrance examination.
Petitioners, who are all MBBS doctors, submitted that COVID-19 cases are exploding day-to-day and have crossed 2.5 lakhs. In view thereof conducting PG entrance test on 11.06.2020 at this crucial point would be incorrect.
Petitioners also placed reliance on the decision of the National Testing Agency to postpone several other examinations.
The Petitioner further argued that there is no need to hold the examination at this point to augment the numbers of doctors available with AIIMS inasmuch as AIIMS can easily appoint non-academic junior residents doctors on contractual basis.
While pointing out that large amount of resources have already been invested in conducting these exams at 250 centres across the country, the counsel appearing for AIIMS submitted that all precautions which are prescribed by the concerned governments including norms of Social-Distancing etc. would be maintained while carrying out the examination.
Medical Council of India also supported the stance taken by AIIMS by stating that given the present pandemic conditions prevailing this would augment the medical capacity of AIIMS which is a very important aspect.
At the outset, the court observed that the petition is liable to be dismissed on the basis of delay and laches as the Petitioners approached the court just two days before the scheduled date of the examination.
Even otherwise, the court further said, there is a clear stipulation that all advisories/guidelines of Government of India regarding Social-Distance and Sanitization are to be followed at the exam centres. Hence safety measures are being taken.
Therefore, the court held:
'Clearly, there are no cogent reasons to postpone the PG entrance examination as is sought to be urged now at the very last minute. The respondent/AIIMS will be bound by all advisories/guidelines regarding precautions to be taken for these gatherings as prescribed and as per usual medical norms.'
The Petitioners in this case were represented by Mr Md.Azam Ansari, Mr. Athar Alam and Mr. Sumbol Atha.
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