Cancelled seats in Telangana's three private colleges and worried med students: VC of Kaloji Uni weighs in

The NMC decision came after it conducted a surprise inspection and stated that these three colleges lacked proper faculty and infrastructure 
This is what he said | (Pic: EdexLive)
This is what he said | (Pic: EdexLive)

After the National Medical Commission (NMC) cancelled 450 MBBS seats and 70 PG seats in three private medical colleges in Telangana, the matter is still a cause for concern and has seen various developments — the latest being about 50 postgraduate students from two of these colleges staging a protest at the state’s Kaloji Narayana Rao University of Health Science (KNRUHS) asking for the varsity to accommodate them in state medical colleges.

The apex medical body’s decision came after it conducted a surprise inspection and stated that these three colleges lacked proper faculty and infrastructure due to which the seats were cancelled. But as the inspection was conducted after the admissions in these colleges had been completed, this led to complications. The students who lost their seats are concerned about their future as they stand the risk of losing a year.

Also, those who obtained admissions through the management quota are worried about the money they have invested. The nature of the inspection itself has been put into question and the students and parents have alleged that it was a pre-planned mala-fide move. Even the personal involvement of the Vice-Chancellor of KNRUHS Dr B Karunakar Reddy has been alleged.

How about a quick recap?
On May 19, the NMC cancelled about 150 seats each in Mahavir Institute of Medical Science in Vikarabad, MNR Medical College and Hospital in Sangareddy and TRR Institute of Medical Science in Patancheru. While both MBBS and PG medical seats have been cancelled for MNR College, PG seats have been cancelled in Mahavir Institute and TRR Institute has lost its letter of permission for the first renewal and second batch of admissions.

The sudden decision to cancel the seats and the subsequent concerns of the students invited the state government’s attention and it decided to intervene. A three-member high-level panel was constructed to look into the matter. After receiving representations from a section of the affected students, the state’s Health Minister wrote a letter to the NMC to find a solution. Meanwhile, TRR Institute filed an appeal in the Telangana High Court. It has been alleged by the college that the NMC had permitted the admissions to the 150 MBBS seats after conducting an inspection in November 2021.

Commenting on the report of the second surprise inspection conducted on March 30, 2022, the counsel appearing for the college stated that the infrastructure could not vanish overnight. The counsel alleged, “Waiting till we complete our admissions and then cancelling shows that the action is mala-fide and not bona-fide. The whole exercise of inspection and consequent cancellation seems to be a pre-planned one,” as mentioned in a report by Medical Dialogues.

On the other hand, the NMC has stated recently that MNR College has a faculty shortage of 59.3% and Mahavir Institute has a faculty shortage of 50.47%. The details of the third college have not been revealed. It said that in this situation, it could not permit the admissions since the college could not be allowed to produce subpar doctors and risk public health in the future, another report by Medical Dialogues stated. 

Nonetheless, a Bench of Justices Anninreddy Abhishek Reddy and Mummineni Sudheer Kumar, who heard the case, put a stay on NMC’s cancellation order, stating that the NMC Act itself provides for a statutory appeal and the aggrieved college has filed one. The stay order has been issued until the apex medical body takes a decision regarding the statutory appeal.

What the VC says
However, the situation seems to be hanging on a thread, as there have been no updates from the NMC. KNRUHS VC Dr B Karunakar Reddy has written to the apex medical body seeking guidelines. In a conversation with EdexLive, he informed, “Even we don’t know what the situation is. There are no clear-cut guidelines from the NMC. Only after the NMC issues the guidelines in this matter, can we do something about it and take decisions regarding the students whose seats have been cancelled. If it allows, then we will accommodate them in the state medical colleges.”

He added, “Except for the first letter that the NMC sent notifying us about the cancellation, there has been no other correspondence. The court has put a stay on the NMC’s order. The colleges have filed appeals as well. Once the NMC takes a decision on the statutory obligation of appeal filed by the college, only then we can take the required decisions.”

He further suggested, “Since the NMC has not given any final decision and the colleges have not been closed down, the students whose seats have been cancelled can continue to go to their respective colleges and attend the classes. The classes are going on for the rest of the students. So, I’m sure if these students go to the colleges, classes for them will be conducted as well."

Meanwhile, Dr D Praveen Kumar, the Registrar of KNRUHS has assured that the students’ future will not be hampered and the state would take the students' concerns into consideration.

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