Give protesting MBBS students another chance to appear for exams, HC urges varsity

MBBS students
MBBS students of Kozhikode Government Medical College protest on Sunday night.

Kochi: The High Court has asked the Kerala University of Health and Sciences (KUHS) to give those students who failed to appear for the last two final year MBBS exams another chance to appear afresh for the papers along with the junior batch on September 19, or on any other date decided by the examination board of the varsity.

While disposing of a petition, filed by a group of final-year MBBS students pleading to postpone the exams that were being conducted before the completion of the mandatory practical training, Justice Raja Vijayaraghavan asked KUHS to either direct the medical colleges to allow the final-year students to sit along with the junior batch to complete their clinical training or to form special batches to give them the required training.

The court also asked the university to call a meeting of the examination board to decide on the request of the students for preponing the examination scheduled for September 19. The opinion of the medical colleges would also be solicited by the university on this matter.

No postponement

The High Court, however, refused to postpone the ongoing round of final-year MBBS examinations and warned that any attempt by the striking students to threaten those who want to write the exams would be viewed seriously.

The court said that the ongoing examination should be conducted as per the schedule, while directing KUHS and medical colleges to ensure protection to students who are willing to write the examinations.

Though the court turned down the plea for postponing the ongoing examinations, it asked the university to call a meeting of the principals of all medical colleges and review the request.

The court also recorded the assurance of the counsel of the university that all issues raised by the protesting students would be placed before the examination board, which will meet within a month, and a decision on holding fresh exams for those who missed it this time would be taken.

Low turnout across State

Only 1,900 students, out of a total 3,600, attended the first paper of General Medicine on Tuesday. The turnout was the same during the first day of the examinations on March 31 for the second paper of General Medicine.

The next dates on which the examinations will be held are April 7, 11, 13, 18 and 20.

At Kalamassery Medical College, of the 104 students enrolled for the examinations, only 30 were present on Tuesday. In Kottayam Medical College, only 86 students skipped the examination out of the 150 that had registered.

In Kozhikode medical college, only 31 of the 221 enrolled students wrote the examination, while at Alappuzha Medical College, 82 of 138 students gave the exam. At Manjeri Medical College, only 10 students appeared for the examinations and around 80 boycotted it.

The current boycott is in protest of the varsity's decision to conduct the final-year MBBS examinations before the completion of the clinical training sessions, which form part of the syllabus. 

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