Medical aspirants and their parents are up in arms as committees appointed by the state to probe complaints of irregularities in medical and dental admissions in colleges failed to submit its report within the stipulated time. They claim the delay can lead to students losing their academic year.
The state government had on November 29 set up three committees headed by the deans of the government medical and dental colleges in Pune, Nagpur and Aurangabad. They were to look into complaints filed by the parents and also find if the colleges had followed norms set by the Pravesh Niyantran Samiti (PNS).
The reports were expected to be submitted to the Samiti by December 14. Parents were, however, not content with the government’s move as they feared the probe would cause further delay. Shantanu Kale, a complainant, said, "The committees have not met even once. The 15 days deadline is over. When will they start the probe, when will they compile the report and submit it? They have not yet contacted a single complainant. Infact we have contacted the committee members several times and have received vague replies."
Jayant Jain, president of Forum for Fairness in Education, said the move to set up committees was just an eyewash. "The government must understand that this delay will waste an entire academic year of students. The prevailing situation could have been avoided had the Samiti acted immediately on the complaints of students and parents before the September 30 cut-off date for admissions set by the apex court," he said.
The matter came to light when parents and students across the state staged a protest against the Samiti for the delay in scrutinising the admissions according to ASSO-CET (entrance test to private and unaided medical and dental colleges).
Some of these parents even observed hunger strike. After a Supreme Court order on May 8, the Association for Private Unaided Medical and Dental Colleges (APUMDC) in the state conducted only two rounds of admissions on the basis of ASSO-CET, and not three like earlier.
Students then had to apply at institute level for the vacant seats. However, parents alleged that colleges flouted the admission norms prescribed by the the Samiti. Following this, 27 students and their parents along with NGO Forum for Fairness in Education filed a petition in Mumbai High Court on December 11, seeking cancellation of admissions given to non-meritorious