March 1, 2024
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Can’t Admit Ukraine Returnees In Indian Colleges: Centre To Supreme Court

A setback for the thousands of Indian undergraduate medical students who were studying in Ukraine but were forced to return due to the conflict with Russia, the Centre informed the Supreme Court on Thursday that there are no legal provisions in place to allow them to be accommodated in local medical colleges.

The National Medical Commission (NMC) has not yet approved the transfer or housing of any foreign medical students at any Indian medical institutes or universities, the Center claimed in an affidavit.

The government filed its response in a batch of petitions filed by students, who are undergraduate medical students of first to fourth-year batches in their respective foreign medical colleges/universities, who are primarily seeking transfer to medical colleges in India in their respective semesters.

“It is humbly submitted that in so far as such students are concerned, there are no such provisions either under the Indian Medical Council Act, 1956 or the National Medical Commission Act, 2019 as well as the Regulations to accommodate or transfer medical students from any foreign medical institutes/colleges to Indian medical colleges”, the government said.

However, it stated that in order to help and support these returning students who were unable to complete their MBBS programmes in Ukraine, NMC in consultation with the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has issued a Public Notice dated September 6, 2022, indicating that NMC would accept completion of their remaining programmes abroad (with the approval of parent university/Institution in Ukraine).

The government stated that the parent institutions in Ukraine are expected to award the certificate, completion, or degree after they have finished their remaining courses.

It made reference to the students’ claims that the academic mobility scheme, which involves temporarily relocating the affected international students to other foreign countries, is unconstitutional despite public notice of September 6 to that effect.

The ministry of health and family welfare was advised to accommodate these students in Indian institutions and universities as a one-time gesture by the Lok Sabha committee on external affairs in a report dated August 3. The top court had already requested that the Center declare its policy or position regarding housing for these medical students.

Picture Courtesy: Google/images are subject to copyright

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