The Bombay High Court on Monday refused to grant interim stay on a recent rule of the Maharashtra government which makes domicile certificate mandatory for 85% seats in medical and dental colleges in the state.
A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice MS Sonak was hearing a batch of petitions filed by a certain private unaided medical and dental colleges and minority colleges in Maharashtra challenging the domicile requirement.
“We are declining interim relief sought by the petitioners to stay the government rule making domicile requirement mandatory. We do not want to interfere with the government decision at this stage,” the bench said.
The court admitted all the petitions and will take these up for final hearing after three weeks. The court also vacated the stay on admission process which it had granted earlier.
Admission to medical and dental colleges will now happen as per the new domicile certificate rule. With this order, private unaided medical and dental colleges will not be able to admit students from outside Maharashtra at least for the next academic year.
The state government had put a condition by which domicile certificate of Maharashtra was mandatory to seek admission to 85% seats in medical and dental colleges.
The state government had earlier argued that state domicile rules are required to protect the interest of students from Maharashtra who cannot take admissions in other states owing to similar policies in place by them.
Acting Advocate General Rohit Deo had argued that the domicile restriction cannot exceed 85%. The remaining 15% is the institutional quota. Such institutes cannot demand another 15% for all India quota beyond this.
Advocate VM Thorat, appearing for the petitioners, argued that if the colleges have to admit 85% students as per
the domicile requirement then such colleges are bound to lose their reputation by admitting less meritorious students.
After the court refused to grant interim relief, Thorat said they would approach the Supreme Court.