New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday deferred the hearing of a petition challenging the centre and Medical Counselling Committee’s (MCC) direction to provide 27 per cent reservation for Other Backward Class (OBC) and 10 per cent for EWS category for admission to postgraduate medical seats through National Entrance Eligibility Test (NEET). The apex court will commence the hearing on the matter on November 23.
NEET PG counselling for 50 per cent AIQ seats was scheduled to begin from October 25, 2021. However, MCC had postponed the NEET PG counselling 2021 dates. Also, the Centre earlier had assured the Supreme Court that the NEET PG 2021 counselling will not start till the court decides the challenge to 27 per cent reservation for OBC and 10 per cent for EWS category in PG all India quota seats (MBBS/BDS and MD/MS/MDS) from the current academic session.
The bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and BV Nagarathna recorded the assurance and observed that if counselling takes place before the Court takes a decision, the “students will be in a serious problem”.
“We will take your word for it then, so long as the students are not counselled. We will take your word that counselling is not starting till we decide one way or the other. Students will be in a serious problem otherwise…” Justice Chandrachud said.
On October 21, the Supreme Court had asked the Centre whether it would like to revisit the limit of Rs 8 lakh annual income, fixed for determining the EWS category for reservation in NEET admissions for medical courses.
On October 26, the Centre justified before the Supreme Court its decision to set the limit of Rs 8 lakh annual income fixed for determining the EWS category for reservation in NEET admissions for medical courses. In an affidavit filed by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment before the Supreme Court, it said the principle of fixing the amount is rational and in keeping with Articles 14, 15 and 16 of the Constitution.