Kerala Rajya Sabha MP Binoy Bishwam wrote a letter to the NMC on December 8 stating that the stipend was “a matter of rights and not charitable” and that the NMC’s notification had allowed “great ambiguity and arbitrariness” in the stipend. “As a result, the management of private colleges may reject the stipend of MBBS interns as they have complete discretion without any protection,” the letter said. In Kerala, most private college interns pay Rs 6,000-15,000 while the state government pays Rs 25,000. In most states, private colleges pay about 30% less than public colleges.
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In the case of postgraduate residency, the NMC schedule explicitly states that “residents of private medical colleges / deemed universities should be given equal stipends to PG residents of government medical colleges in that state”. In 2017, MCI’s executive committee did not approve the Academic Committee’s recommendation regarding internship allowances for MBBS students that the provision of stipends for interns was not provided in the Graduate Medical Education (GME) regulations and thus the problem was out of scope. Of MCI. However, in 2018, the Board of Governors considering repealing the MCI and introducing a provision in the GME Regulation that states: Interns of Medical Institutions / Central Government Medical Institutions are being offered in the State / UT where the institution is located. ”
The provision was never introduced and the BoG was abolished, after which MCI was replaced by NMC, which was expected to tighten controls on private colleges, accusing MCI of doing nothing. The NMC, however, sought response on April 21 this year to a draft regulation mandating rotating internships, 2021 where it left the determination of stipends to “appropriate authorities”. No changes were made after the comments and the unchanged draft was gazetted on 18 November.
“The central government has the power to intervene and change the decision of the NMC. Section 45 of the NMC Act states that the commissions and autonomous boards shall “be bound by such directives in the exercise of their powers and in the performance of their functions under this Act, in the question of policy as may be given by the Central Government”. This problem has been lingering since the time of MCI, since 2017, ”said Dr KV Babu, who wrote a letter to the ministry and NMC seeking immediate response.
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