Delhi HC Seeks Ayush Ministry's Response On Plea Against Aadhaar-Based Attendance, Location-Based Recruitment
The Delhi High Court has sought response of the Ministry of Ayush on a petition challenging its decision to bring in Aadhaar-based attendance in Ayurvedic, Homeopathic, Unani and Siddha Colleges and making it mandatory for them to recruit staff registered in the particular state in which they are located.
Justice C Hari Shankar issued notice to the Ministry of Ayush and Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM) on a petition filed by Uttranchal Ayurvedic College through Advocate Amit Sahni who alleged that the ministry, while passing several directions in its minutes of meetings (MOM) dated January 9, has violated its own statutes and notifications of 2012 and 2016 and also the law settled by the Supreme Court of India.
Sahni said in the petition that the ministry has passed several directions, including the conduct of inspections even in Ayurvedic, Homeopathic, Unani and Siddha Colleges, which have been granted permission for five years.
Further, the MOM stated that the colleges shall have to recruit faculty/staff registered in that particular state and make it mandatory for colleges to use Aadhaar for attendance.
Appearing for the petitioner, senior advocate N Hariharan, along with Sahni, submitted that the ministry is bound to comply with the Minimum Standard Regulation (MSR) Notifications passed in 2012 and 2016, which provided a detailed procedure for granting permission to medical colleges in the country. It was further argued that the said notifications could not have been circumvented by way of an administrative order.
They also argued that as per law, colleges which have been granted permission for five years cannot be inspected unless there is a complaint of serious nature against them.
It was also argued that the ministry passed unlawful directions to make it mandatory to implement Aadhaar-enabled geo location-based bio-metric attendance system (AGBAS) for staff/faculty of the colleges, which is in clear violation of the Constitution bench judgment passed in KS Puttaswamy Vs Union of India.
The counsel also submitted that it is unlawful on part of the ministry to pass directions to all colleges across the country to recruit only such staff/faculty, who are registered in that particular state where the concerned college is located.
The counsel for the ministry sought time while submitting that the directions under challenge were tentative in nature and no final decision was taken on the same.
The court then issued a notice seeking a response within four weeks while refusing to grant any stay.
The matter is now listed for March 27.