HC Rejects Plea Of Doctor Who Ticked Wrong Box

Chennai : Sympathy cannot replace constitutional consciousness, said Madras high court, refusing to allow a doctor who had ‘inadvertently’ declared herself as ‘general’ category candidate instead of OBC, in PG medical admissions this year.

Dr Pratheeksha, an OBC candidate, had scored 269 marks in PG-NEET this year. While applying for counselling, she had wrongly ticked the open category instead of OBC. The cut-off mark for OBC category is 257 and 291 for general category. Finding herself not ineligible for counselling due to her mistake, she moved the high court for a direction to the National Board of Examination (NBE) to permit her in the counselling.

Justice N Sehshasayee dismissed the petition, but made a suggestion to NBE, Medical Counselling Committee and National Medical Committee to consider her case after all rounds of counselling, if some seats still remained vacant, but only after obtaining approval from the Supreme Court.

The petitioner-doctor was indisputably at fault and no government agency had breached the rule of law, the judge pointed out, adding: “If a direction were to be issued to respondents, there would be a new variety called court quota, in addition to All India quota, management quota and multiple sub-quotas on reservation.” In a competitive environment like medical admissions, where the chasers for seats are several times more than the seats, and where rank list is prepared based on 8th or 10th decimal marks, there can hardly be any place for anyone to make a mistake, Justice Seshasayee observed.

Although the candidate wanted to be considered only for vacancies after the stray-counselling (last round), it would require the court to open the official portal for uploading correct information/documents, he said, turning down options of opening “wild card entries.” The portal can be opened with approval from the apex court, it said.

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