The High Court of Karnataka has upheld an ordinance issued by the Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences (RGUHS) controlling the Central Evaluation Program (CAP) for MBBS theoretical paper assessment, which would be in effect beginning February 1, 2021.
Dismissing the petitions filed challenging the ordinance, Justice Sachin Shankar Magadum observed that the medical students, who are required to maintain high academic integrity, cannot insist upon lowering the education standards.
Medical students are placed at a higher pedestal on account of their crucial role in the healthcare system of the society. Therefore, the students who are pursuing medicine have to maintain high academic integrity. Medical students have to work hard and earn their degrees in a fair and honest way by putting in the hours to study and complete assignments. Then only the students can gain the good worth of medical education and would contribute a lot to the health care system of the society.
Maintaining academic integrity while earning a medical degree represents true academic accomplishments. It is this credibility and work ethic which would take a medical doctor a long way at his workplace and at the end of the day it is the patient who would benefit. Therefore, medical students cannot insist on lowering the education standards” the judge has noted in his order.
The CAP was provided for “general valuation” by any two eligible internal examiners from affiliated institutes of RGUHS. In addition, a ‘Deviation Valuation’ was also provided where the difference in an award of total marks between two examiners in the general valuation is 15% or more of the maximum marks prescribed for the paper. In such circumstances, it would be referred to any other eligible three internal examiners for evaluation.
Two first-year MBBS students had challenged the ordinance claiming that it has resulted in gross discrimination between the nature of evaluation, consideration of marks and also yardstick which is proposed to be adopted for ironing out the differences in evaluation. They claimed this was violative of Article 14 of the Constitution.
The court pointed out that the ordinance notification was placed in the meeting of the Committee of Academic Council, held on February 1, 2021, and the same was approved by the Committee. It was also ratified by the Syndicate on February 21, 2021. The new policy of assessment of the answer scripts of undergraduate students is as per the Medical Council of India advisory, the court noted.