On 26 May, the Supreme Court suggested that from the next onwards, the National Board of Examination (NBE) ought to think of having a “common or single online counselling for admissions to Postgraduate Medical Courses leading to Degrees and Diplomas and the seats in the Diplomate of National Board (DNB) courses in India. However, a bench refused to order common counselling for the current academic year to NBE. The NBE conducts the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test Post Graduate (NEET PG).
The judgement said, “Since the petitioners have approached the court at a stage where the entire process has been undertaken and many candidates have been allocated various courses in the counselling, we do not deem it appropriate to pass any direction for the present year.
“However, going by the assertions made in a response filed by the Medical Council of India, we may observe that a common counselling or single online counselling in the coming years would definitely take care of any similar grievance,” the bench said.
The NBE is an autonomous body under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. It was established to improve the quality of medical education. The NBE conducts postgraduate and postdoctoral examinations.
The DNB is a postgraduate or postdoctoral diploma in which the training lasts for three years and FNB is a fellowship in a subspecialty where the training goes on for a couple of years.
The Supreme Court took note of the submissions of the NBE and observed that it was acquiescent to conducting common counselling from the next year onwards.
The verdict came on a plea filed by four medical students who had secured certain ranks in the NEET PG. Yet, during counselling (undertaken by the Medical Counselling Committee), they could not get the degree courses of their choice.
“Their grievance is that it is only after the regular seats of Post Graduate Courses leading to Degree and Diploma are exhausted that the counselling for DNB courses is undertaken, and those who have secured any seat in courses leading to Degrees and Diplomas are disentitled to lay any claim for DNB courses,” said the Supreme Court.