No Maratha quota for PG medical and dental seats in Maharashtra this year: Supreme Court
No Maratha quota for PG medical and dental seats in Maharashtra this year: Supreme CourtUpdated: May 10, 2019 00:55 IST
The Supreme Court on Thursday rejected a plea by the Maharashtra government and upheld a Bombay high court (HC) ruling that reservation for Marathas under the Socially and Educationally Backward Classes (SEBC) won’t apply to any post-graduate medical and dental courses this year. This means fresh admissions will have to be held for these courses across the state.
A bench of justices L Nageswara Rao and MR Shah also upheld the HC judgement that the government’s distribution of seats for different caste groups, including the SEBC, is illegal.
A state government notification on March 8 said the SEBC quota will be implemented for health science courses starting this year.
Last week, the Nagpur bench of the Bombay HC turned this down, saying the registration for the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Tests (NEET) — the qualifying exam for these courses — began on October 16, before the quota came into being.
The state then approached the top court.
In a notice issued on Thursday, the state common entrance test (CET) cell said admissions to all seats done during the first and second round have been cancelled and will be revised in due course. “The admitted candidates can collect their original documents and the fees they have paid from the institute that admitted them. The institutes concerned should return all original documents and fees to the candidates without fail,” the cell’s notice read.
The Supreme Court has extended the deadline for admissions from May 18 to May 25.
During arguments in the SC, Dhruv Mehta and Ashwin Deshpande, the counsels for the 13 students who filed the original petitions against the quota in the high court , spoke against implementing the SEBC reservation for PG medical and dental courses this year. “The students didn’t get the subjects and colleges of their choice because seats were reserved under SEBC,” said Deshpande.
Students who applied under the quota and activists, however, are unhappy, and asked the state government to use its authority to grant admissions to Maratha students. “The state can issue an order to restore the admissions of Maratha students. These students opted for SEBC quota because the option was made available to them by the state,” said Balasaheb Sarate, a Maratha activist, who filed a petition in the HC in favour of the quota.
In the first round, 968 candidates, including 178 who applied under Maratha quota, were admitted to medical colleges, while 215 aspirants, including 28 Maratha quota students, got admission in dental colleges. The data of second round admissions hasn’t been released.