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Junior resident doctors serving in ESIC approach – Supreme Court seeking to be included in 50% ‘in-service’ reservation for PG courses

In the case of Hemant Kumar Verma & Or’s. v ESIC & Or’s, the Junior Doctors who have completed their MBBS courses from Institutions/ Hospitals run by the Employees State Insurance Corporation (“ESIC”), approached the Top Court seeking to be included in the 50% “in-service” doctors’ reservation for PG courses, which is currently restricted to Insurance Medical Officers grade.

The vacation bench comprising Justice AS Bopanna and Justice Vikram Nath agreed to list the petition filed by the Junior Resident Doctors, On being mentioned by AOR Sachin Patil.

It was observed that the Junior Resident Doctors serving in ESIC/ESIS institutions have also sought to declare them as “in-service” doctors of ESIC/ESIS for being included in reservations for PG courses.

The petitioner in the plea argued that only IMO-II (doctors who are recruited by ESIC) working in the ESIC institutions have been given 50% reservation in PG medical seats in the ESIC Hospitals, as per the policy.

Further, it is stated that a bond of serving Hospitals of ESIC as in-service candidates for the period of five years with ESIC has also been executed by the Junior Resident Doctors. The petitioners contended that the responsibilities, duties, the Qualifications, the entitlements as well as pay scale of junior resident doctors and IMO-II are one and the same and Both officials are at par.

Junior resident doctors serving in ESIC approach – Violates Article 14 of the Constitution

The petitioners in the plea further state that though Petitioners are similarly placed junior resident doctors like IMO- II but they are not held to be eligible for said 50% quota of ESIC Hospitals. However, the policy of ESIC is arbitrary and discriminatory which violates Article 14 of the Constitution ESIC has been granting the benefit of reservation to one set of in-service candidates and denying a said benefit to another set of in-service candidates, when both are at par and similarly placed, was also submitted before the court.

It is also contended by the resident doctors that in the ESIC medical institutions they are entitled to the reservation of PG seats on account of institutional reservation or preference system since the resident doctors are the alumni of the same institution.

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