The Supreme Court of India on Wednesday struck down the ordinance promulgated by the Kerala government to legalise the admission of 180 medical students. The state had brought the ordinance after the top court had cancelled the admission of 180 undergraduate students in the self-financing Kannur and Karuna medical colleges in 2016-17. However, the state government had brought in the Kerala Professional Colleges (Regularisation of Admission in Medical Colleges) Bill, 2017 to overturn the judgment. The ordinance was challenged by the Medical Council of India. On Wednesday, a bench of Justice Arun Mishra and Indu Malhotra struck down the ordinance as 'ultra vires' or beyond the legal power of the state government.
What is the case?
The Kerala High Court had cancelled the admission of 180 students - 150 from Kannur Medical College and 30 from Karuna Medical College in Palakkad - of 2016-17 batch. The court said that both the colleges were found to be not following the transparent admission procedures and gave preference to 180 students instead of more meritorious ones. Later, the Supreme Court had upheld the decision of the High Court. It also rejected the review petition filed by the state government on March 28.
Later, the state passed an ordinance to overturn the judgment. It was challenged by the Medical Council of India, which argued that it broke the principle of equality. A few days later, the state government passed the bill, with the support of the Opposition, but Governor P Sathasivam refused to sign it. The state government claimed that the motive behind passing the bill was to save the academic lives of the student.