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NEET Admissions : Supreme Court Issues Notice On Plea Seeking Time For Fresh Registration In NRI Quota Before Mop Up Counseling

Shruti Kakkar
18 April 2022 9:27 AM GMT
NEET Admissions : Supreme Court Issues Notice On Plea Seeking Time For Fresh Registration In NRI Quota Before Mop Up Counseling
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The Supreme Court on Monday issued notice in a petition filed by NRI students seeking time for fresh registration in the NRI quota before commencement of the Mop-Up counseling. The bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and Surya Kant also asked the State of Kerala to apprise the bench with about the seats that remain unfilled after the Mop Up round. The bench was considering a Special...

The Supreme Court on Monday issued notice in a petition filed by NRI students seeking time for fresh registration in the NRI quota before commencement of the Mop-Up counseling.

The bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and Surya Kant also asked the State of Kerala to apprise the bench with about the seats that remain unfilled after the Mop Up round.

The bench was considering a Special Leave Petition assailing Kerala High Court's order dated April 8, 2022 which dismissed the writ appeal preferred by Kerala Private Medical College Management Association ("KPMCMA") and upholding single judge's order of refusing to grant time.

In the impugned judgment, the bench headed by Chief Justice S Manikumar had said,

"Since it has been pointed out that the last date for admission for MBBS course is today 08.04.2022, as per the directions issued by the National Medical Commission, the appellants cannot be given liberty to grant time for fresh registration in NRI quota. We find that sufficient time was granted to the NRI quota candidates to exercise their option. Ext. P2 list was published as early as on 24.12.2021. Therefore, the same can only mean that no eligible NRI candidate is available to exercise option. We are not inclined to grant any relief to the appellants."

The petition was filed by the Association seeking directions to the Commissioner of Entrance Examinations and Admission Supervisory Committee of Kerala to to grant time for fresh registration in the NRI quota to the eligible students before commencement of the Mop-Up counselling. The Association pointed out that as per the NRI list, there were 618 rank holders. However, even after two rounds of counseling, 57 NRI Quota seats were lying vacant.The Association contended that numerous eligible candidates were unable to exercise their option due to the restrictions imposed due to the pandemic. In the said circumstances, it submitted a representation requesting to invite fresh applications to fill up vacant seats in the NRI Quota before the Mop up allotment.

What Transpired In The Supreme Court Today?

Appearing for the petitioners, Senior Advocate Dushyant Dave relied on the Top Court's 2012 judgment which dealt with transfer of unfilled seats in medical admission matters of NRI quota to general pool. Referring to the said judgement, Dave contended that the seats allocated for NRI Quota can not be transferred to any other quota.

Relying on the Top Court's judgement in PA Inamdar & Ors v State of Maharashtra, Dave submitted that the money collected from the NRI students is utilized for benefiting students from economically weaker sections of the society.

"Illegality cant be perpetuated. NRI Quota is to support the SC/ST reservation in these institutions. It's a part of mop up allotment, everything was done illegally. Government didn't even inform us", submitted the Senior Counsel.

"Last date for the admission was April 8, how do we know? Are there any seats left in the mop up round?", asked Justice Chandrachud.

"46 seats of mop up are left," replied Senior Advocate Dushyant Dave.

"46 seats in NRI quota are unfilled and as per the prospectus the direction was to convert them," remarked Justice Kant.

"We cannot also ignore that those seats that were converted have been filled up. Now what is the status of the seats?", Justice Chandrachud further added.

Responding to the remarks posed by the bench, Senior Counsel contended that as per the prospectus, NRI seats cannot be converted. In this regard he further argued that clause 5.5.4 of the prospectus only applied in case of special reservation quota and not NRI quota. He also drew court's attention to the seats that fall under the category of "special reservation".

"NRI quota will not come within special reservation," Senior Counsel further added.

"How can we cancel their admission? The students are not before us. Problem is that NRIs also come under special reservation. How do we now unseat students?" remarked Justice Chandrachud.

Urging the bench to issue notice, Senior Counsel said, " Just look at the damage, where do we find money? NRI is not part of mandatory reservation seats. This is not a reservation but following Inamdar. Just see the rationale. There are many stray vacancies. Why should a premium be put?"

Acceding to the Senior Counsel's request, the bench accordingly while issuing notice in , their order said, "Issue notice. Keep it next Friday. Respondent State shall list before this court upto date position in regard to the seats if any which remain unfilled after the mop up round."

Senior Advocate Huzefa Ahmadi appeared for KPMCMA. Though the lawyers sought for a stay of the HC judgment, the bench declined.

Clarifying that it was not granting any stay for the impugned judgment, the bench directed for listing the matter on April 22, 2022.

Case Title: Maha P v State of Kerala & Ors|Diary No. 11358-2022

Click Here To Read/Download High Court Judgment 

Click Here To Read/Download Supreme Court Order



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