BENGALURU: Almost a month after their courses ended, around 6,000 MBBS graduates in Karnataka — the whole batch of 2015 — are not able to either apply for higher studies or get registered with the Karnataka Medical Council to practise even though they have completed internships in the hospitals to which their colleges are affiliated to. All thanks to the confusion created by the government with its compulsory one-year rural service rule.
Even though the high court has stayed the compulsory rural service Act and asked colleges to give students degree certificates — the condition being that students will have to come back and do the service if the final order goes against them — colleges are not doing so.
This has also affected students who joined the courses through All India Pre Medical Test (AIPMT) — 15% of gover nment seats are reserved for AIPMT. The state produces around 6,000 MBBS, 1,100 post graduate medical students and over 200 super specialists every year.
Dr H Veerabhadrappa, president of the Karnataka Medical Council, said not a single candidate has registered this year, though there have been many enquiries. “This is sad. We get calls from students but we explain them that we need an affidavit signed by himher before the court to register himher as a doctor. The affidavit should mention that the candidate would come back to Karnataka for rural intern ship if the Act is implemented. No one has reached out to us yet with affidavit. Any No law should be retrospective. The government should ideally chalked out a proper plan before implementing it,” said Dr H Veerabhadrappa.
An MBBS graduate from Hassan medical college said he has not received the course completion certificate as the director of medical education has reportedly told medical colleges not to issue the certificates until further orders. “We got seats through All India selection test and not through Karnataka CET. Only those who got seats through KCET will have to do rural internship, not us. Delay in issuing certificate and registration is affecting my chances of pursuing higher education or joining a job,” the graduate said.
The only option they seem to be having is to approach the court. “There is a stay on the implementation the rural internship by the high court. The option left for us is to petition before the court and declare through an affidavit that we would come back to serve in Karnataka for rural internship for one year if the Act gets implemented and plead for registration and issuance of certificate,” said an MCh candidate working in Victoria hospital as a plastic surgeon.
No exemption for anyone:
Dr SS Harsoor, director of medical education, said the issue of rural internship is handled by the health commission. “This matter has not come to me off late. If students approach me, I will explain the same. Why should they resist working in rural areas for a year whether they have signed or not? There were plans also to include the students who got seats under management quota to do mandatory rural internship, and not just for those who got government seats. The rules are the same for those who got seats through AIPMT. The matter is currently in court,” he said.