Facing an unfavourable Medical Council of India (MCI) inspection report, the principals of all medical colleges of Punjab that aspired to increase their MBBS seats, were called by the union health ministry on Thursday and Friday.
Those who attended the meeting included principals of government medical colleges of Patiala and Faridkot, Sri Guru Ram Dass Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Amritsar, and Dayanand Medical College, Ludhiana.
It was an increase of 180 MBBS seats for which medical colleges of Punjab had applied for. In the break-up, Government Medical College, Patiala, Sri Guru Ram Dass Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Amritsar, and Guru Gobind Singh Medical College, Faridkot, had applied for adding 50 seats each in their existing quota of 150, 100 and 50 seats, respectively.
Similarly, Dayanand Medical College and Hospital in Ludhiana has also applied for an increase in its seats from 70 to 100.
According to sources in the Punjab medical education and research department, while pointing out the deficiencies found in the inspection report of the MCI, each of these colleges were asked by the union health ministry to submit a compliance report. The communication said that in case of institutions that failed to submit compliance report, it would be considered they had nothing to say and their case for increase of MBBS seats would be rejected.
The union health ministry will forward these compliance reports to the MCI. According to the procedure, the council can accept the compliance report sent by the ministry. Also, the MCI can also conduct a fresh inspection to take any decision regarding the increase of seats.
Sources said the most common deficiencies related to the number of senior resident doctors, which were not adequate in the colleges of Punjab. Similarly, infrastructure, like size of classrooms and auditoria, was also a common issue with the state medical colleges, which the MCI pointed out in its report.
The decision on the MCI inspection report on two medical colleges -- Chintpurni Medical College, Pathankot, and Punjab Institute of Medical Sciences, Jalandhar, is still pending with the MCI. Both these colleges have around 300 MBBS seats.