On Thursday, the Supreme Court approved a proposal put forth by the Central government to allow only those candidates to resign, who had joined Institutes of National Importance (INIs) post-counseling. The top court was hearing an appeal by medical candidates challenging restrictions applied to resignations from National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) seats.
The bench, Justice BR Gavai, Justice KV Viswanathan, and Justice Sandeep Mehta, stated that the proposal given was reasonable. It added that the proposal balanced the interests of meritorious students with the concerns of medical institutions, where seats would fall vacant if upgrades were allowed.
The proposal framed by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in consultation with AIIMS, Delhi, is applicable only for this year. The proposal specifies that resignation will be permitted only for those candidates who have joined the INI institutes through counseling conducted by the AIIMS, Delhi. It further added that the seats that have become vacant by the resignation of INI candidates will be available in the special round, which is to be conducted by the Medical Counseling Committee (MCC). It was noted that candidates who have joined round 1 or round 2 seats of MCC and are not allotted INI seats will not be allowed to resign from their seats. Moreover, the upgrade facility will be available in the special round to all candidates who have joined rounds 1 and 2 of the Medical Counseling Committee (MCC).
Articulating the order, Justice Viswanathan remarked that if penalties as high as Rs 50 lakh were set, good candidates would be driven away. Responding, Aishwarya Bhati, Additional Solicitor General, appearing for the Center, said that the government has suggested that penalties be done away with.
Thereafter, Justice Gavai said that the government has to balance the interests of private institutions.
(Input from various sources)