Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Gold medal can be given to student topping in 2nd attempt: HC to GU

AHMEDABAD: Can a repeat student get gold medal for topping medical exams in Gujarat University? The Gujarat high court has ruled out the university`s contention that a repeater cannot claim gold medal even after scoring highest marks.

A division bench of the high court has asked the varsity to reconsider its decision of denying gold medal to a student, who topped the super specialty course of DM cardiology from UN Mehta Institute of Cardiology and Research Centre in 2009.

Dr Manoj Bansal obtained admission in this course in 2005 after clearing All India Entrance Examination on the only seat available in the institute. The institute has been running this course since 1989, but it was regularised by Medical Council of India only after Bansal took the issue to the high court.

After competition of three years, Bansal took the exams in July 2008. He cleared written test, but failed in practical. He approached the high court and also made representation to the Gujarat University (GU) to declare the result annulled and alleged malpractice.

Bansal took the exams again in January 2009 and cleared the test with 601 marks out of 1,000. However, GU awarded the gold medal, which is instituted in the name of Dr Nathubhai Harjivan Patel, to another doctor Mitend Nivrutti Kharche who had scored 589 in final exams conducted in July 2009.

Bansal again made a representation to the university to consider him for the medal, but the varsity executive Council decided not to cancel the first result and refused to award him the medal because he passed at second attempt.

The issue reached the high court again and a single-judge bench rejected Bansal`s petition. The doctor filed an appeal before a division bench, wherein his counsel Tulsi Savani contended that the university ordinance and donor`s conditions do not mention that a student cannot get gold medal at second attempt. The only restriction is that the exams have to be cleared within a year from minimum prescribed period of the course.

Bansal enrolled in July 2005 and before July 2009, he cleared the test and holds right to gold medal.
The bench headed by chief justice heard the university, but it failed to show rules that prohibit bestowing of the medal on candidate, who clear test on second attempt.

After the proceeding, the court concluded that "number of attempts was not a constraint at all" in awarding the medal. The bench set aside university`s as well as the single-judge bench`s orders and sent the issue back to the vice chancellor and registrar for reconsideration.

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