Panel gets absolute power on medical colleges
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Last Updated: Tuesday, May 25, 2010, 19:43
New Delhi: The Union Health Ministry will have no say in granting recognition to medical colleges as absolute powers have been given in this regard to a six-member panel which replaced the defunct Medical Council of India.

Speaking to the media after his first meeting today with the new committee, Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said, "The six-member panel which replaced the MCI will be an autonomous body with double powers. It will include the powers of MCI and also that of the Health Ministry."

He said, "As such no recommendations from the Ministry will be sent to them nor these will be entertained by them. As used to happen earlier where the Ministry had a final say, now the panel's decision will be considered final."

Azad explained that in earlier occasions any party unhappy with the MCI's decision had the privilege to approach the Ministry. This will not happen now, he added.

"If an aggrieved party is not satisfied with their decision, the new panel will have a re-look into it and finally give a go-ahead," he said.

A six-member panel headed by eminent doctor S K Sarin was formed to replace the 76-year-old MCI, which had been facing allegations of corrupt practices. Other members of the panel, which will be in charge till the next one year, are Ranjit Roy Chowdhary, Sita Naik, Gautam Sen, Devi Shetty and R L Salhan.

The panel met Health Secretary Sujatha Rao and Azad to discuss how to carry out the regulatory functions in medical education. The minister has advised the doctors to judiciously take all decisions and maintain transparency, honesty and integrity.

"I have told them they that they will be in a glass house which will be transparent and their performance will be monitored by all," Azad said.

Asked about ways to check any abuse of powers by any member in the new team, Azad said, "In an ordinance passed on May 15, the ministry have been empowered to dissolve or remove any member if found guilty (of such practices)."


First Published: Tuesday, May 25, 2010, 19:43

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