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NEET PG counselling: Supreme Court reserves verdict, petitioners want EWS income limit brought down from Rs 8 lakh per annum

The two-judge bench of Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and Justice A.S. Bopanna heard the matter considering Rs 8 lakh as the criteria for availing the newly introduced EWS quota in medical admissions.

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The Supreme Court on Thursday reserved its verdict and asked petitioners to file a final reply by tomorrow on the Economically Weaker Section (EWS) reservation for NEET PG Counselling 2021.

The two-judge bench of Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and Justice A.S. Bopanna heard the matter considering Rs 8 lakh as the criteria for availing the newly introduced EWS quota in medical admissions.

The bench expressed concern over the Federation of Resident Doctors’ Association’s counsel advocate Archana Pathak Dave’s remark that the country needs doctors as the third wave is at the doorsteps.

FORDA counsel Dave urged for immediate counselling as every year, 45,000 doctors are inducted as PG doctors but due to the pandemic, the exam took place late this year, only 2nd and 3rd-year residents are there because 1st year students have not joined.

Also Read: NEET PG 2021: Supreme Court to hear matter on EWS quota from Wednesday

Senior Advocate Anand Grover, the counsel for the petitioners, said the income limit for EWS should be kept at Rs 5 lakh per annum instead of the existing Rs 8 lakh.

He said the vast majority of people have annual income below Rs 2.5 lakh and even if the income tax limit is now Rs 5 lakh, more than 80% of people are in this range. If the Rs 5 lakh criteria is adopted, the vast majority will fall into that. Rs 5 lakh is the basic criteria that should be there and there is no reason to why Rs 8 lakh criteria has been adopted, Grover said.

Also Read: NEET PG counselling: Supreme Court begins hearing, petitioners’ say Centre can’t change rules when only SC can

Senior Advocate Arvind Datar has urged the court to keep EWS criteria at Rs 2.5 lakh. 

On behalf of the Centre, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said they changed the rules and the plea of ​​the petitioners’ is wrong. This reservation is not being given for the first time, he added. He said that from 2006, a provision of 27% reservation was made in Central Educational Institutions for OBCs. It has been extended to 10% EWS from January 2019, he added.

SG Mehta said admissions are being done in Central universities under this. The examination in UPSC is also being done on the basis of this reservation. There is no justification for the petitioners’ opposition to NEET PG. It will be discriminatory if it is not implemented in NEET PG.

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