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Supreme Court issues notice on IMA plea against rules allowing Ayurvedic doctors from performing surgery

The three-judge bench of Chief Justice S.A. Bobde, Justice A.S. Bopanna and Justice V. Ramasubramanian was considering the plea challenging the regulations framed by the Central Council of Indian Medicine

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The Supreme Court on Monday issued notice to the Centre while hearing a PIL filed by the Indian Medical Association challenging the legality and validity of the Indian Medicine Central Council (Post Graduate Ayurveda Education) Regulations 2016 as amended by the Indian Medicine Central Council (Post Graduate Ayurveda Education) Amendment Regulations 2020.

The three-judge bench of Chief Justice S.A. Bobde, Justice A.S. Bopanna and Justice V. Ramasubramanian was considering the plea challenging the regulations framed by the Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM) seeking to permit PG Ayurveda-qualified persons to practice modern surgeries.

PG Ayurvedic students were allowed to perform various types of general surgery and orthopaedic, ophthalmology and dental examinations. To this end, the CCIM on November 19, 2020 amended the rules of the IMA.

The IMA argues that the CCIM does not have the authority to include modern medicine in the syllabus. According to the petitioner, CCIM’s powers are restricted to the system of Indian Medicine, but through the impugned regulations, it has sought to impermissibly prescribe certain practices which are an integral part of Modern Medicine, as part of the curriculum of Indian Medicine.

The plea has further stated that even in the past, when similar attempts were made by the CCIM to transgress into the domain of Modern Medicine, all such attempts were set aside by the Supreme Court and the High Courts across the country.

The Supreme Court judgement in Dr. Mukhtiar Chand & Ors. Vs. State of Punjab was cited by the petitioner in which the apex court held that the persons who are registered on Central or State Registers of Indian Medicine under the 1970 Act are prohibited from practicing Modern Medicine and this prohibition is also statutorily provided in Section 15(2)(b).

In the petition, it was pointed out that the Supreme Court and the High Courts have repeatedly held that the practitioners in one system of medicine cannot be allowed to transgress into or practice in a completely different and distinct system of medicine and any such act of transgression would, apart from being illegal and unsustainable in law, also be detrimental to society at large.

During the hearing of the case, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said that it is a matter of concern and will file an affidavit.

The court while considering the matter issued notice to the Central government to file their reply.

Maninder Singh, senior advocate, assisted by advocate Prabhas Bajaj appeared on behalf of the IMA.

Read Also: Great Indian Bustard: Supreme Court says overhead low voltage power lines should be moved underground

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