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SC notice to Centre on plea by aspirant with learning disability seeking admission in MBBS course


NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday sought the response of the Centre and others to a plea filed by an aspirant with learning disability seeking admission in an MBBS course.

The petitioner has sought permission to pursue medical education under Persons with Disabilities Reservation as provided for under Section 32 of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016.

A bench comprising Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud and Justices P S Narasimha and Dipankar Datta issued notices to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, National Medical Commission (NMC)and others.

Appearing for the petitioner, advocate Gaurav Kumar Bansal submitted that NMC has deprived MBBS aspirants having Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Specific Learning Disability from pursuing medical course on the ground that at present there is no scale to assess their mental illness.

People with ASD often have problems with social communication and interaction, and may have different ways of learning or paying attention. Specific Learning Disability may be characterised by difficulties in listening, speaking, reading and writing, understanding concepts and calculating, and deficiencies in organisation and integration of ideas and thoughts.

The plea citing the National Medical Commission said it has mentioned that MBBS aspirants having equal to or more than 40 per cent mental illness disability are not eligible for medical course.

“It is respectfully submitted that as far as Intellectual Disability having Specific Learning Disabilities (Perceptual Disabilities, Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, Dyspraxia and Development Aphasia) is concerned the stand of National Medical Commission is that currently there is no quantification scale available to assess the severity of SLD, therefore the cut-off of 40 per cent is arbitrary and more evidence is needed,” the plea said. (PTI)

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