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Five medical colleges of Punjab barred from admissions 2013

The Pakistan Medical and Dental Council (PMDC) has barred five private medical colleges of Punjab from admissions of new (first year) students and advertisements ‘till further order’.

It has warned the medical institutions of penal action under PMDC Ordinance 1962 and Medical and Dental (Amendments) Act 2012 for conducting admissions before the re-inspections which will be carried out according to the schedule.

The PMDC acted on complaints of violations of laid down regulations by the private medical colleges that included

  1. Continental Medical CollegeLahore
  2. AVICENNA Medical College Lahore
  3. Independent Medical College Faisalabad
  4. Faryal Dental College Sheikhupura and
  5. Rahbar Medical & Dental College, Lahore.

The council has conveyed its decision to principals of the colleges through correspondence on Aug 15. The copies of the official correspondence are also available with Dawn.

Surprisingly, of them Faryal Dental College and Rahbar Medical & Dental College – were neither recognised by the PMDC nor affiliated by the University of Health Sciences.

“Please note that as per para 27 (i) of the judgment of Supreme Court of PLD 2007 SC 323 you can not train medical students unless your institute is recognised/notified by the federal government,” the PMDC conveyed to principals of the two institutions through the letter.

It further reproduced the para 27(i) of the judgment saying, “No medical institution or university can train or grant a medical or dental qualification or train and grant both unless the said qualification, degree or diploma has been accorded recognition in terms of Section 11 of the PMDC Ordinance 1962.

“You are hereby categorically directed not to admit or advertise for admission of students unless your institution is notified by the federal government in the fifth schedule of the PMDC Ordinance 1962 and the council has informed about it as any such action shall be construed to be a violation of the PMDC Ordinance 1962, Medical and Dental (Amendments) Act 2012 and orders of the Supreme Court.”

The PMDC warned principals of the two colleges that if any student was admitted before issuance of notification by the federal government, responsibility of any adverse effect on the career of students shall be entirely on the admitting authorities and penal action shall be taken against the institute under Section 22A, 22B of Medical and Dental (Amendments) Act, 2012 which substituted the section 22 of the PMDC Ordinance 1962.

Addressing the principal of Continental Medical College, the PMDC said, “You were directed to apply for re-inspection of your college as per decision of the executive committee/council meeting held on June 2, 2013.”

The decision was communicated to the college administration on June 27. However, it remained unmoved, the PMDC regretted.

“The Continental Medical College, Lahore, is allowed only 50 MBBS admissions annually, therefore, you are categorically directed not to exceed your seat allocation,” the PMDC directed the principal.

The council also warned the college administration of penal action under Section 22A, 22B of Medical and Dental (Amendments) Act 2012 for not following the instructions.

The council warned the AVICENNA Medical College principal stating that it was allowed only 100 MBBS admissions annually. The council directed the college administration not to exceed the allocated seats otherwise it will leave an adverse impact on the future of students.

The identical instructions were also issued to the Independent Medical College, Faisalabad, by the PMDC.

The council took the step against these medical institutions after a petition was dismissed by the Lahore High Court two weeks ago (Aug 5).

The medical colleges had filed petitions against the PMDC’s decision of ‘re-inspections and surprise visits’.

They were of the view that the PMDC had highlighted various shortcomings in their respective institutions while conducting re-inspections and surprise visits during the ‘interim setup’ of the council.

They had argued that the powers of the council were dissolved in view of the Section 36B of Act No XXIX of 2012.

The federal government had appointed an administrator of the PMDC through a notification (No.1-4/2013-PMDC) on Feb 13, 2013, they claimed.

The medical institutions told the court that the administrator had no power to re-inspect the institutions which had already been inspected and recommended for recognition and for enhancement in admissions.

The Lahore High Court, however, dismissed their petitions, saying “the decision of the PMDC to re-inspect or surprise visits is not contrary to the 1962 Ordinance, 2007 and 2012 Regulations.”