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PG Medical Admission | Unfilled Reserved Category Seats For In-Service Candidates To Be Filled Category-Wise In Totality And Not Vertically As Within Compartment Only: MP HC

Zeeshan Thomas
12 April 2022 6:43 AM GMT

The High Court of Madhya Pradesh recently held that the unfilled reserved category seats within the 30 percent reserved quota for in-service candidates, for admission in Post-Graduation in Medical Courses, shall be filled by reserved category students. The Court rejected the contention raised by the Petitioners that since the 30 percent quota of seats were reserved for...

The High Court of Madhya Pradesh recently held that the unfilled reserved category seats within the 30 percent reserved quota for in-service candidates, for admission in Post-Graduation in Medical Courses, shall be filled by reserved category students. The Court rejected the contention raised by the Petitioners that since the 30 percent quota of seats were reserved for in-service candidates, the unfilled reserved category seats ought to be offered first to in-service candidates belonging to unreserved/general category.

After hearing the submissions of the parties and perusing the relevant provisions along with the documents on record, the division bench of Justice Sujoy Paul and Justice D.D. Bansal condensed the question involved in the matter as follows-

"whether the unfilled reserved vacancies are required to be filled up vertically/ category wise or the same can be filled up by taking into account the entire vacancies ?"

The Petitioners had urged that there were two watertight compartments of 'in-service candidates' and 'open candidates' and accordingly, unfilled reserved category vacancies of in-service compartment needed to be vertically filled up from within the candidates of this category. Rejecting the said contention, the Court held that a microscopic reading of the amended Rule 14(1) and (2) of the Madhya Pradesh Chikitsa Shiksha Pravesh Niyam, 2018 ('Admission Rules') would make it clear that the intention of lawmakers while using the word 'Rikhtiyan' (vacancies) relates to all the vacancies and is not confined to the vacancies earmarked for 'in-service' candidates-

A careful reading of sub Rule (1) of Rule 14 shows that out of all the vacancies in all the available subjects in Government and Private Medical/ Dental Hospital, 30% shall be reserved for 'in-service candidates'. The word 'reserved' is not used in the sense it is normally used when community based reservation flowing from Article 15/16 of the Constitution is being given. The intention of legislature was to give a separate source of entry to in-service candidates to the extent of 30% out of the total vacancies.

A minute reading of sub Rule (1) and (2) of Rule 14 leaves no room for any doubt that 'vacancies' means all the vacancies and not vacancies confined to 'in-service candidates'. Putting it differently, in sub Rule (2) of Rule 14 it is mentioned about vacancies of sub Rule (1) of Rule 14(1). At the cost of repetition, in our considered opinion, the vacancy of sub Rule (1) relates to the entire set of vacancies of all subjects available in Government and Private Medical Colleges as well as in Dental Hospitals. Thus, we are unable to persuade ourselves with the line of argument advanced by learned counsel for the petitioners.

The Court opined that once it is clear that the vacancies mentioned in Rule 14 (1) and (2) of the Admission Rules means entire set of vacancies, the argument of Petitioners that 'in-service candidate' and 'open category' candidates belonged to two separate compartments, pales into insignificance. The Court further noted that the intent of the legislature was clear i.e., to apply category-wise reservation for unfilled seats-

The chart (page No.64) on which heavy reliance was placed by Shri Gupta does not establish that there are two separate compartments and there exists a line of control between them which cannot be crossed unless unfilled seats of reserved category are filled up vertically as within the compartment…A combined reading of Rule 2(), Rule 4 (1) and Rule 14(1) and (2) makes it clear like noon day that intention behind bringing these provisions into statute book was to apply the category-wise reservation in the second round of counselling on the entire vacancies and not separately for 'in-service category' and 'open category'.

With the aforesaid observations, the Court held that no case was made out for its interference and accordingly, the petition was dismissed.

Case Title: Dr. Mohita Pandey v. State of Madhya Pradesh and Ors., with connected matters

Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (MP) 107

Click Here To Read/Download Order


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