The Punjab and Haryana high court on Monday dismissed a bunch of petitions of 450-odd Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) course students of private unaided dental colleges of Punjab who had challenged the decision of the Baba Farid University of Health Sciences (BFUHS), Faridkot, of not issuing registration numbers to them.
The high court bench of justice RK Jain held that admissions to this course were to be done on the basis of the All India Pre-Medical Entrance Test (AIPMET) or any other test conducted by the state.
These students were admitted by private dental colleges on the basis of their marks in Class 12 (qualifying examination) for the academic session 2014-15. However, in February, the BFUHS had returned their registration numbers to respective colleges and directed the latter to strike off their names. The BFUHS's decision was challenged by these students before the high court in April.
Though the detailed judgment is awaited, the high court held that these colleges not only violated terms of the prospectus issued before the admissions but also the regulations of the Dental Council of India (DCI) and the Medical Council of India (MCI).
Since the petitioners who got admissions on the basis of advertisements given by these colleges without the approval of the government or the university had spent valuable time and money while pursuing the BDS course's first year, they could avail their civil and criminal remedies against these colleges, the court has said.
The DCI and MCI have also been directed to take appropriate action within 15 days on its March 30 notification, whereby it was stated that if the seats remain vacant, the admission could be done on the basis of marks obtained in the qualifying examination.
The court stated that Clause 4 of the notification (which talks about filling seats on the basis of the qualifying examination) runs contrary to the revised BDS regulations, 2007, and Graduate Medical Education Regulations, 1997.
To a reference made during the course of hearing in the case about some admissions by Adesh University in 2014-15 to the BDS course run by it, the high court stated that 43 students admitted by the university were allowed on the basis of a special test. However, if these admissions were also made in a similar manner, these shall also be de-recognised.
The petitioners had pleaded that their admissions be allowed against the large number of vacant seats lying vacant after the counselling conducted by the university for the academic session 2014-15. They had also argued that in most neighbouring states and in the past in Punjab as well, admissions were done on the basis of the qualifying examination. However, the high court did not accept the argument.