UT administration informed the Punjab and Haryana high court on Tuesday that it had already framed a reservation policy in 2003, which says that a candidate must have passed the qualifying examination (Class 12) from the schools situated in Chandigarh for being considered against the 85% MBBS seats at Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Sector 32, reserved for Chandigarh pool.
The submission was made through a reply filed by the director-principal of GMCH-32, Dr Atul Sachdev, in the court headed by Justice GS Sandhawalia during the resumed hearing of a petition filed by Chandigarh resident and MBBS aspirant Akanksha Mehra, challenging the reservation criteria.
The policy regarding reservation of seats in admission to educational/technical/medical institutions under the control of Chandigarh administration issued on June 25, 2003, reads : “The matter has again been considered by this administration and it has been decided to include all those students who pass the qualifying examination (Class 12) from UT Chandigarh for the 85% quota of the UT pool and the necessity of having passed one lower qualifying examination and having studied for two years at Chandigarh shall be removed from the policy (issued on May 7, 1993) with immediate effect.”
The policy was considered by the Chandigarh administration again on March 16, 2010, and it re-iterated its stand taken on June 25, 2003. Dr Sachdev also informed the court that the petitioner could not be considered for admission at this stage since the first counselling had already been conducted on June 23, and any change in eligibility criterion at this stage would prejudice the interest of selected candidates.
Taking Dr Sachdev’s reply on record, the court allowed the petitioner’s counsel to file his reply by July 3.
Appearing for the petitioner, advocate Rajiv Kataria rubbished Chandigarh administration’s rationale behind the policy. He argued, “There is no condition of domicile, but only the Class 12 condition. There is no justification where a student studies for 11 years outside Chandigarh and becomes eligible for 85% UT quota just by passing Class 12 from a Chandigarh school.”
The counsel said if Chandigarh’s policy had not been challenged in the past over 11 years, it did not mean that it was correct and could not be questioned now.
Despite being a bonafide resident of Chandigarh and having done her schooling till Class 10 from Chandigarh schools, the petitioner had become ineligible for admission to 38 Chandigarh pool MBBS seats since she had passed Class 12 from a SAS Nagar school. In All India Pre Medical Test (AIPMT) 2014, the petitioner had been declared successful and her ranking for Punjab medical colleges is 313, and for Chandigarh seats is 40.