The chief secretary will conduct a probe into the alleged fraudulent practices while granting admissions to private medical and dental colleges, state medical education minister Dr Vijay Kumar Gavit said on Wednesday.
While replying to a calling-attention motion raised by senior Bharatiya Janata Party legislator Devendra Fadnavis, Gavit said that the state plans to set up a new regulatory mechanism to curb malpractices during admissions.
Fadnavis alleged that in the academic year 2012-13, nearly 266 seats were handed out to non-meritorious students. The admission control committee had found irregularities in the admission process in 19 colleges and had demanded that the process be cancelled. The government, however, ignored their recommendations.
“Each seat was sold for Rs1 crore. Medical education secretary Iqbal Singh Chahal and deputy secretary AB Aatraam were involved in the scam worth Rs266crore,” Fadnavis alleged.
Instead of taking action against guilty colleges, the state government wrote a letter to Medical Council of India (MCI) asking whether the recommendations made by the committee are applicable to the government, he said.
Opposition leader Eknath Khadse said that as most colleges belong to the ruling Congress-NCP education barons, the government was protecting the institutes.
Gavit said, “Of the 19 colleges, six approached different courts. Before taking any action, the government had to check if the courts had issued any directives in the case.”
As the Opposition refused to accept the argument, Gavit said, “The charges of corruption by senior officers will be examined by a high-level committee headed by chief secretary.”
Two dental college students had, on Monday, released a video footage showing Gavit abusing them when they went to meet him. Their college, Jamnalal Goenka Dental College in Akola, was de-recognised by the Maharashtra University of Health Sciences and the Dental Council of India for flouting norms. The students had approached Gavit, asking him to help them in their admissions.