Afederation of resident doctors, which had protested till recently over the NEET-PG counselling issue, on Friday hailed the Supreme Court allowing its resumption for admissions for 2021-22 and said it is a ”historic day” for the medical fraternity of the nation.
Resident doctors in Delhi, had been protesting for weeks over the delay in NEET-PG counselling, and on December 31 had called off their strike and resumed services after they received assurances from the government that their demands would be looked into. The stir was led by the Federation of Resident Doctors’ Association (FORDA).
Post graduate doctors are selected through the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test-Post Graduate (NEET-PG) ”Today, 7th January, 2022, is a historic day for the medical fraternity of the nation. The agitation called by FORDA to expedite NEET-PG counselling 2021 commenced on November 27, 2021, following multiple delays and postponement of the counselling,” FORDA said in a statement issued hours after the apex court’s ruling.
The Supreme Court on Friday, in an interim order, allowed resumption of medical counselling for NEET-PG admissions for the year 2021-22 and upheld the validity of 27 per cent OBC quota.
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A bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud and A S Bopanna said that detailed reasons for the interim order will follow, and the counselling for the NEET-PG for the academic year 2021-22 will proceed as per the criteria already notified.
The bench passed the interim order on a batch of petitions filed by the NEET-PG candidates, who had challenged a July 29, 2021 notification for the implementation of the OBC and the EWS quotas from the 2021-22 academic year on grounds that the Rs 8 lakh income criteria for determining EWS was with without any scientific study.
FORDA earlier had moved the Supreme Court saying there is an urgent need to commence the NEET-PG counselling and that the revision of the other backward classes and economically weaker section reservation criteria at the fag end of the process will lead to further delay in the final selection.
In an application seeking impleadment in the pending petition, FORDA had said that every year approximately 45,000 candidates are selected as Post Graduate doctors through the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (Postgraduate).
But the process was halted in 2021 as the NEET-PG was delayed until September due to the coronavirus pandemic, FORDA said.
FORDA president Dr Manish, after calling off the stir had on December 31, had said the agitation was carried out by ”overworked and exhausted” doctors.
In its statement on Friday, the federation thanked all resident doctor associations and resident doctors, Indian Medical Association, Delhi Medical Association, and the media, and citizens who came forward and supported, when the third wave of the coronavirus pandemic was looming large.
”We are also thankful to the Hon’ble Supreme Court & MoHFW (Ministry of Health and Family Welfare) for taking note of the grievance of resident doctors,” it said.