Delhi High Court notice to AIIMS for flouting PG admission norms for disabled candidates
The All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) has been asked by the Delhi High Court to respond on a PIL that accuses the esteemed institute of not reserving adequate number of seats in its post-graduate courses for people with disabilities.
The PIL is based on a Right to Information (RTI) application filed by disability activist Dr Satendra Singh who is also a physiologist at University College of Medical Sciences.
As per the RTI reply, AIIMS had advertised for 130 seats in January 2018 for PG courses such as MD-Doctor of Medicine, MS-Master of Surgery, MCH-Master Chirurgiae etc. and no disabled person was selected at the time, while 198 seats where advertised in July 2018 and a single candidate with disability was selected for the course.
After that, 107 seats were again advertised in January 2019 and not even one applicant with disability was selected for the PG course.
The Public Interest Litigation (PIL) claims that of the total number of 435 seats advertised for post-graduate courses at AIIMS, only one seat was reserved for a candidate with disability. The PIL says that the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) has not followed the provisions of the persons with disabilities act in seat allocation that provides for 5% of the seats to be reserved for disabled candidates.
This is unfortunate since AIIMS is one of India’s top medical colleges and the flouting of RPWD rules by such a premier institute sets a bad examples for others.
This is blatant flouting of the Act, which states 5% of the seats must be reserved for persons with disabilities. This should be around 21 of the 435 seats. The Ministry of Human Resource Development ranked AIIMS at number one among medical colleges. This is based on five criteria, including one on diversity and inclusion as well. – Dr Satendra Singh, Disability rights advocate
Advocate Gaurav Bansal, who filed the PIL on behalf of Prahari Sahyog Association spoke to NewzHook.
“What is happening is not correct as everyone has the right to inclusive education including persons with disabilities. If institutes like AIIMS, which is also an institute of national importance, are failing to provide equal opportunities to persons with disabilities, then there is something seriously wrong with the system. This is something which should be sorted out soon. AIIMS has to these things in accordance with the law,” said Advocate Bansal. “It is the duty of every person, institute, and authority to support inclusion in higher education in the country”.
The Delhi High Court has issued a notice to the AIIMS and a response has been sought within four weeks.