SC issues notices on bonds for super speciality docs

Under the bond conditions imposed by some states, the doctors would have to serve three years in rural and difficult areas, where there is no necessary infrastructure for their practice.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday issued a notice to the Centre, Medical Council of India and others on a plea by doctors challenging the mandatory service bond or penalty introduced by the state governments, including Karnataka for pursuing super speciality courses.

A bench of Justices S A Bobde and L Nageswara Rao admitted the petition filed by over 100 PG doctors along with "Association of Medical Super Specialty Aspirants & Residents" for consideration as they contended such conditions were arbitrary, harsh and unreasonable.

Senior advocate Amrendra Sharan, along with advocate Vaibhav Srivastava, appearing for the doctors, said several states have introduced a bond system at the time of admission under which an aspirant has to remain in service for 10 years.

If the aspirant breaks the bond, he/she will have to pay Rs 2 crore as penalty.

He said the bond system introduced by around 12 states was in contravention to the apex court's earlier verdict, which had said that only merit should be the criteria for enrolment to the super speciality courses.

Sharan said in the bond system introduced by Tamil Nadu, the aspirants joining courses at a medical college have to execute a bond for service of 10 years and failure to abide by it would entail a penalty of Rs 2 crore.

He said under the bond conditions imposed by some states, the doctors would have to serve three years in rural and difficult areas, where there are no necessary infrastructure for their practice. 

The bench said it would look into the matter and sought responses from Centre, the MCI and state governments.

The super speciality course aspirants had claimed that due to the bond conditions in various states, doctors did not join the courses last year, entailing a huge loss to the public exchequer.

According to the rules in Karnataka, the mandatory period of service for a candidate passing out of super speciality course is three years or a penalty of Rs 50 lakh.

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SC issues notices on bonds for super speciality docs

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