Can a person with low vision become a doctor? SC to examine NEET qualifier’s plea

A Supreme Court bench has issued notices to Centre and Gujarat on a plea of a student who has cleared the NEET 2018 undergraduate examination, seeking a direction for issuance of disability certificate as per law.

india Updated: Jun 15, 2018 22:45 IST
HT Correspondent 
HT Correspondent 
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
low vision,doctor,Supreme Court
The student claims he has scored all-India rank of 4,68,982 and rank 419 under the ‘physically handicapped’ category and has a fair chance of getting a seat in medical/dental colleges in All India quota/state government medical colleges under special category.

The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to examine a medical aspirant’s plea to let him pursue an MBBS course despite suffering from the disability of “low vision” in which the eyesight cannot be corrected or improved.

The issue arose before a bench of justice UU Lalit and justice Deepak Gupta, which asked whether a person with visual disability could become a doctor to treat patients. “If you talk about any other profession like legal or teaching, it can be understood that even a blind person can successfully pursue the career. As far as MBBS is concerned, we have to see how much it is feasible and possible,” the bench said.

The bench issued notices to the Centre and the Gujarat government on the plea of the student who has cleared the NEET 2018 undergraduate examination, seeking a direction for issuance of disability certificate as per law.

Justice Lalit recalled his experience with a law intern who was blind and said he had difficulties in reading documents. “After successfully completing his internship with me, he has now become a Rhodes scholar studying at the University of Oxford,” said justice Lalit.

Senior advocate Sanjay Hegde and advocate Govind Jee appeared for the student and said there was already a provision for reservation of 5% seats of total intake capacity in the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016. He said a direction should be issued to the Centre and Gujarat government for implementing the reservation scheme for persons with benchmark disability.

The court asked the committee of BJ Medical College, Ahmedabad, to examine the student within three days and posted the matter for further hearing on July 3. The student, in his petition, has claimed he has scored all-India rank of 4,68,982 and rank 419 under the ‘physically handicapped’ category and has a fair chance of getting a seat in medical/dental colleges in All India quota/state government medical colleges under special category.

First Published: Jun 15, 2018 22:45 IST