They say announcement comes despite PMO saying the exams will be put off
NEW DELHI: A group of doctors has moved the Supreme Court challenging an AIIMS notification announcing June 16 as the date for the Post Graduate Entrance Test-INICET exams in “utter disregard” of an assurance from the Prime Minister’s Office to postpone PG exams by four months.
The petition said an assurance was also given that students would be given a month’s time to prepare for the exams. It said doctors, including the 26 petitioners in the case, were also promised that they would be given the Prime Minister’s COVID National Service Samman and priority in government recruitment on completing 100 days of COVID-related service.
Instead, the notification has put undue pressure on the exhauste doctors to prepare for their exams within a short period.
“The notification and conduct of examination on June 16, 2021, is not in public interest in view of the present condition of the country and non-availability of doctors and beds in the hospitals coupled with the fact that there is a dearth of COVID-19 vaccination, and many doctors have taken a job or duty in a State which is not their own, and also many of them were preparing for their PG examinations. However, when the assurance from the Prime Minister’s Office came, a lot of them took up jobs/duties [at places] other than their own States and became frontline workers,” the petition, represented by advocate Pallavi Pratap, said.
The doctors said “there is not enough time for most of them to travel back in order to take the examinations and they are most likely to be affected by travel restrictions as imposed by different States. This puts undue burden on the already fatigued, distressed and tired doctors”.
Initially, the examination was scheduled to take place in May, but was postponed due to the worsening COVID situation. There are some 815 seats in 10 colleges, for which more than 80,000 doctors will appear and take the examination.
“In the prevailing circumstances due to COVID-19, the conduct of this examination is resulting in building up pressure on the graduate doctors from across India to sit for the examination on June 16, when under the present circumstances the Board examinations (Central Board of Secondary Education 10th and 12th Grade) and other professional examinations have been either cancelled or postponed,” the petition said.
The petition said it was also important to note that the same testing authority, which is to conduct INI-CET, had postponed the B.Sc. and M.Sc. Nursing exams, just 24 hours before declaring that INI-CET would be held on June 16.
“This step-motherly attitude towards the doctors is completely uncalled for,” the petition said.
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