Chandigarh, March 5:
The passing of ‘’The Punjab Private Health Sciences Educational Institutions (Regulation of Admission, Fixation of Fee and Making of Reservation) Amendment Bill, 2020’’ by the Punjab Vidhan Sabha is a revolutionary step towards ending an era of arbitration of Private Medical Universities, opined Mr. OP Soni , Minister for Medical Education and Research, Punjab.
He informed that henceforth the Admission, Fixation of Fee and making of Reservations in Private Medical Institutions including all colleges and Universities/Deemed Universities will to be in consonance with the directions of State Government.
Detailing the objects and reasons of amendment in the Punjab Private Health Sciences Educational Institutions (Regulation of Admission, Fixation of Fee and Making of Reservation) Amendment Act, 2006, the Minister informed that as of now the said Act governs the fixation of fees, admissions and reservation in private medical institutions of the Punjab. But, Adesh University filed a writ petition against it. Consequently, Hon'ble Punjab & Haryana High Court vide its order in May 2014 stated that Adesh University and other private universities were not covered under the Act of 2006 of the Department of Medical Education and Research, Punjab which was applicable only to private medical institutions and not private universities.
The Minister said that for the reasons better known to the state government of that time, it did not make any effort to bring the private universities under the umbrella of the said Act. Hence, in the larger public interest, Capt. Amarinder Singh led government decided to broaden the horizons of the Act and an amendment was proposed.
With the clearance from Vidhan Sabha, now “there will be uniform legislation with respect to fixation of fee, reservations of seats and admissions in all private health Institutions/Universities which are not established and administered by the Central or State Government and it Includes an institution, by whatever name called, including any University. Deemed University or college, whether aided or unaided, non-minority and administered or managed or run by an individual or individuals or Trust or any other private entity, agency or organization, which institution conducts or carries on the activity of imparting education to students leading to a degree or diploma in any course or courses in the field of Health Sciences” , said OP Soni. “This will streamline and remove confusion on matters of fixation of fee, reservations of seats and admissions”, he asserted.
This amended Act will be called the Punjab Private Health Sciences Educational Institutions (Regulation of Admission, Fixation of Fee and Making of Reservation) Amendment Act, 2020 and it shall come into force on and with effect from the date of its publication in the Official Gazette ,he informed.
He said that all private health sciences educational institutions shall reserve seats for admission in open merit category and management category, for advancement of socially and educationally backward classes of citizens or for the Scheduled Çastes or Scheduled Tribes to such extent as may be notified by the State Govemment in the Official Gazette from time to time: Provided that such reservation shall not apply to the minority category seats in minority private health sciences educational institutions.
He informed that State Government shall determine the fee to be charged by the private health sciences educational institutions having regard to the minimum norms of infrastructure and facilities as laid down by the concerned Council and an added that an eight member Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr. KK Talwar, Advisor( Health & Medical Education & Research) to Government of Punjab, has been constituted for fee fixation.
Pertinently, "health sciences" in the Act means an education leading to impart Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS), Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS), Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery (BAMS), Bachelor of Homoeopathic Medicine and Surgery (BHMS) and/or their Post Graduate(s) and such other level of course(s) pertaining to health and medical education, as may be notified by the State Government from time to time;"