SUPREME COURT ON PLEA CHALLENGING MCC NOTICE MODIFYING OBC RESERVATION CRITERIA FOR INSTITUTIONAL PREFERENCE SEATS IN CENTRAL INSTITUTES

The Supreme Court in the case Amandeep v Medical Counselling Committee observed the notice dated 10.01.2022 of modifying OBC reservation criteria with respect to Institutional Preference seats in Central Institutes (“impugned notification”) further the court directed the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Union Government to file a counter affidavit within 4 weeks in a plea challenging Medical Counselling Committee’s (MCC) while assailing Delhi High Court’s dismissal of a writ petition. By the way of impugned notification, it is contended that the MCC had changed the ‘rules of the game’ after the commencement of the counselling and that too on 13.01.2022, the date just before the candidates were required to fill their choices. OBC reservation for PG courses in an impugned notification against institutional preference seats was restricted to candidates in the Central OBC list which consequently resulted in the non-consideration of candidates falling in the Delhi OBC list for admission to the reserved seats while considering the same, it was assaulted in the petition that MCC cannot deprive Delhi OBC candidates of their right to be considered under the Delhi OBC quota against the 50% institutional preference seats and initially the vide Information Bulletin dated 03.10.2021 It is pertinent to note that MCC permitted candidates to be admitted in terms of the list maintained by the Govt. of NCT of Delhi against the OBC seats in the 50% institutional preference seats. Furthermore, the Central agency expressed intention to rely only on the Central OBC list vide the impugned notification. It was held by the Delhi High Court that there was no change in the rules of the game after it had begun. In the impugned order, while upholding the validity of MCC’s notification dated 10.01.2022. The Court further observed: it cannot be denied that FAQ no. 50 as initially notified on 03.10.2021, and thereafter, on 10.01.2022 sought to convey otherwise, at the same time all the candidates were also well aware that in all central institutes including the VMMC & SJH, ABVIMS & RML, ESIC, BASAIDARAPUR, it was only the central OBC list which was being followed for Under Graduate courses from NEET-PG 2020 itself moreover In my view, this position that in all Central Institutions, admissions against seats reserved for the OBC was meant to be only for those in the Central OBC list was and therefore from the beginning it was crystal clear to everyone. The Vacation bench comprising of Justice DY Chandrachud and the justice Bela M. Trivedi observed that noting the substratum of the matter to be an ‘important issue’ and the bench directed to file a response in the matter.

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