The Supreme Court, in a recent ruling, has declined to entertain a petition challenging the Telangana government’s policy of instituting a 100% reservation quota for local candidates in the “competent authority quota” for medical colleges established post June 2014. The decision came after the state government, via a July 3 order, reserved all competent authority quota seats in medical colleges established after Telangana’s formation for local MBBS aspirants domiciled in the state. This move was framed as an effort to enhance local healthcare services and medical education access. However, aspirants from the neighboring state of Andhra Pradesh contested the policy, claiming it to be illegal, arbitrary, and in violation of constitutional rights.
The petitioners argued that this “discriminatory” policy contradicts the Andhra Pradesh Reorganization Act of 2014 and infringes upon Articles 14, 16, and 21 of the Constitution. A bench comprising Justices PS Narasimha and SVN Bhatti refrained from entertaining the plea, citing a similar plea awaiting adjudication in the Telangana High Court. The Supreme Court expressed disapproval of the petitioners’ attempt to initiate parallel proceedings while the matter was already under consideration by the high court.
Although the high court initially expressed concerns regarding the compatibility of the government’s order with the Andhra Pradesh Educational Institutions (Regulation of Admissions) Order, 1974, it eventually allowed the state government and the university to announce admission results, provided they considered the candidature of six petitioners in relation to the 20 older medical colleges in Telangana.
The petitioners approaching the Supreme Court contended that they possessed superior NEET scores and All-India ranks compared to the six candidates granted relief by the Telangana High Court. Despite applying for web counseling and selecting their preferred colleges out of the 56 medical institutions in the state, these candidates were not allocated seats by the Kaloji Narayanrao University of Health Sciences in the 36 colleges established post Telangana’s formation.
The petitioners alleged that the Telangana government’s revision of the admission policy was driven by an ulterior motive to discriminate against Andhra Pradesh students. They asserted that the 100% reservation policy contradicts Article 14, as it treats unequals as equals, thereby negating meritorious candidates’ equal opportunity. Advocate P Thirumala Rao represented the MBBS aspirants, and their petition was filed through Advocate-on-Record Filza Moonis.
This policy amendment in Telangana, effective June 2, 2014, reallocates 100% of seats in medical colleges to local students. However, the revision has sparked debates around constitutionality and fairness, prompting both Supreme Court and Telangana High Court considerations.
Source Live law