Punjab has finally agreed to conduct joint counselling for Post Graduate medical admissions in the state.
The Punjab medical education and research department has uploaded a document on its website, stating that Baba Farid University of Health Sciences (BFUHS) based in Faridkot will be hosting all admission counselling for all public (government) and private medical and dental institutions. The counselling will be held on the basis of NEET- PG merit.
The document also stated that all the private colleges under the state’s Deemed University Act, are also going to be included in the joint counselling. This was stated in reference to the centre’s circular of 5th December, 2016, which asked the states to opt for the joint counselling way.
Government of Haryana has already stepped forward to conduct joint counselling on NEET- PG merit basis.
The announcement made on Monday by the Punjab Medical Department implies that two deemed private universities, Adesh Institute of Medical Sciences, Bathinda and Sri Guru Ravi Das Institute of Medical Sciences, Amritsar, and private colleges like Christian Medical College, Ludhiana are not authorised to hold any counselling separately for PG admissions next session, the process for which starts in April.
This move means a change in the state policy, which allowed private medical institutions to hold separate admission counselling till last session, for the MBBS and BDS admissions, despite the Centre calling for joint counselling for admissions.
According to the sources of the department, there has been pressure on the state government to follow a similar structure for undergraduate admissions in the upcoming, next session also.
K Siva Prasad, current secretary of Medical Education, said that no private institution will now be able to hold separate admission counselling. This includes even those institutions that have been granted the status of deemed university.
Students are welcoming this decision, expressing that with the new move students will not have to apply to multiple colleges and this will save them from the harassment in private colleges, who sometimes throw in the admission rules at the time of the counselling itself.
Dr. Rajinder Sharma, the President of the Indian Medical Association, Punjab, supported this move and said that this move would now stop any under the table handlings that private colleges sometimes indulge in, and ensure more transparency in the process.