The Delhi High Court has deferred the hearing of a petition filed by the Association of MD Physicians seeking the postponement of Foreign Medical Graduate Examination (FMGE) to June 11.
The Vacation Bench of Justice Amit Bansal asked the petitioner and the respondents to place on record the relevant documents relied upon them during arguments. The Judge remarked that he needs to be satisfied that the respondent authorities have taken necessary precautions before conducting the exam.
The instant Writ Petition has been filed on behalf of Association of MD Physicians through its president Dr. Rajesh Rajan seeking postponement of Foreign Medical Graduate Examination, conducted by the National Board of Examination (NBE), scheduled to be held in mid-June, on account of the Covid situation prevailing in the country.
The counsel for the petitioner submitted that the petitioner is an association of around 40 members, who are all registered for the examination. He further submitted that their only concern is that the exam be postponed for about 4 to 6 weeks considering the ongoing pandemic.
Kirtiman Singh, appearing for the National Board of Examination, submitted that this is a qualifying examination conducted twice a year by Indian authorities to confer a right of licensure on doctors who have acquired foreign degree, and has been taking place all through the Covid period.
He submitted that when the exam was conducted in August 2020, around 17,198 candidates appeared; while in December 2020, around 18,576 candidates appeared. Furthermore, it was submitted that 18,600 candidates have registered to take the exam in June 2021. He informed the Court that if the petitioners do not want to take the exam right now, they can take it in December as unlike entrance examinations, there is no cap on number of attempts in this exam.
He alleged that the present petition has been set up to espouse the cause of few students; and is not maintainable as there is neither any resolution authorising the institution of the present proceedings nor is there any authorisation on part of deponent to take proceedings forward. He further informed the Court that the exam is going to be conducted in around 52 cities at around 98 centres all over India, and all necessary checks are at place to ensure safety norms in conducting the exam.
T. Singhdev, counsel for respondents, also raised preliminary objection on the maintainability of the petition alleging it to be a propped-up petition filed for making certain aspects simpler for these foreign medical students. He further submitted that this is not any entrance examination, but rather an exam to enroll the candidates and increase the workforce.
The Court has asked the petitioner and the respondents to place on record the resolution showing the authorisation of the association to institute the proceedings and the Covid considerations taken by the Centre for conducting the exam in pandemic times.