THE PUNJAB government told the Punjab and Haryana High Court on Friday that the state was actively considering the matter of Chintpurni Medical College and Hospital against which it has initiated the process of revoking the No Objection Certificate for inadequate infrastructure and staff. Last month, the Centre had barred the Pathankot-based college from conducting admission for two years, making it an imminent case of second medical college in the state to face closure in the past two months.
Assistant Advocate-General of Punjab, Gurveer Sidhu, has informed the single bench of Justice Fateh Deep Singh that the government would take a decision on the college and its students within two weeks from Friday. The government had last month withdrawn the Essentiality Certificate, also called No Objection Certificate, of Gian Sagar Colleges and started the process of shifting students to other institutes.
Following a report in March by an inspection committee, which pointed out to a large number of glaring deficiencies in the functioning of the college, the Department of Medical Education and Research last month had issued a show cause notice to the college as to why its Essentiality Certificate should not be withdrawn. The department had again on May 31 asked the administration of Chintpurni School of Educational Society, which runs the college, for a personal hearing before the health secretary on June 7.
Officials in the health department said the hearing was still on in the case of Chintpurni Medical College and it would be premature to declare that the college would meet the same fate as that of Gian Sagar colleges. “The case has not been finalised yet,” said a senior official in the health department.
Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on May 31 barred 32 private medical colleges across the country, including the Pathankot-based college, from admitting students for 2017-18 and 2018-19 sessions making a revival difficult for the college which had been allotted 150 MBBS seats and has a 300-bedded hospital with it. The college, through its director, has moved the Supreme Court against the order issued by the Centre.
Medical Council of India, through repeated inspections, has reported that the college has failed to maintain standards. An inspection by Baba Farid University of Health Sciences last year had also found that adequate faculty was not available at the college and the record of patients at the hospital was also wrong.
Health Minister Brahm Mohindra said it is the MCI, which had taken action against the two colleges because of lack of faculty and proper hospital infrastructure required for teaching of the students. “But the government will take all possible steps to protect the career of students who have been affected by the developments,” he added.