A Public Interest Litigation has been moved in the Delhi High Court seeking voting rights to all nurses registered with Delhi Nursing Council for the purpose of electing it's office bearers and executive committee.
Moved by Indian Professional Nurses Association, an NGO, through Advocates Robin Raju and Joel Joseph, the plea also seeks a further direction on Delhi Nursing Council to publish the annual audited accounts on its website.
Delhi Nursing Council is a statutory body constituted by The Delhi Nursing Council Act,1997. The Council is supervised by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Delhi Government.
Highlighting multiple concerns faced by the nursing officers, the plea raises the issue of thedire need to bring amendments in the Delhi Nursing Council Act, 1997 with regards to the process of nominating members to the nursing council.
"It is submitted that about 90,000 nurses registered with Delhi Nursing Council have no right to elect the representatives of a body that has been constituted, inter-alia, to work for their welfare," the plea states.
In this backdrop, the plea submits that the aforesaid practiceadopted by the Council overlooks the fact that that the Indian Nursing Council Act, 1947, which constitutes the Indian Nursing Council, by virtue of sec. 3, provides that the Indian Nursing Council shall composed of members who should be elected by the respective bodies.
"Thus it is the understanding of the petitioner that the Central Act favours the system of election rather than nomination," the plea adds.
Stating that the denial of voting right to nurses is sheer overlooking of the fact that other professionals including Doctors, Advocates and Chartered Accountant have voting rights in the election process of their respective councils, the plea submits:
"The Doctors registered in Delhi vote to elect members to Delhi Medical Council. Likewise, the Advocates and Chartered Accountants through voting elect their representatives in the Bar Council of Delhi and Institute of Chartered Accountants of India. Hence, to deny the Nursing Officers the right to elect Delhi Nursing Council members is clearly arbitrary and against the principles of democracy, fairness and equality."
The plea also mentions that the Association has been raising issues since past 2 years including the last representation sent to the Respondents on June 2, 2021, however, the it is the case of the petitioner association that no corrective steps have been taken in the matter.
"..that depriving only nurses (as other professionals have the said right) the right to elect their representatives violates Article 14 and Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution," the plea submits.
Title: Indian Professional Nurses Association (IPNA) v. Delhi Nursing Council & Anr.