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Koneru Ramakrishna Vs. the Director of Medical Service and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectConstitution
CourtAndhra Pradesh High Court
Decided On
Case NumberWrit Appeal No. 462 of 1978
Judge
Reported inAIR1979AP223
ActsConstitution of India - Articles 14, 15 and 15(4)
AppellantKoneru Ramakrishna
RespondentThe Director of Medical Service and ors.
Appellant AdvocateS. Suryaprakasarao, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateGovt. Pleader for E.H.
Excerpt:
.....year m.d. course - appellant alleging that reservation postulated by sub-rule (2) in favour of service candidates who secured less marks than appellant violative of article 14 - candidates who are already in medical service certainly constitute a class or category as they have already been charged with responsibility of catering to medical requirements of people - classification of such service candidates for purpose of reservation - service candidates more effectively render serve than others as they already been charged with task of medical services to people - classification of such service candidates in such circumstances is not without purpose - writ petition rightly dismissed by high court - writ appeal dismissed. - - 4665/78 and the unsuccessful writ petitioner has..........who are selected by the andhra pradesh public service commission for appointment to andhra pradesh medical services. candidates selected in reserved quota and in open competition shall be counted for this purpose, m. d. pathology: m.d. pharmacology: m. d. micro-biology m. d. physiology. m. d. bio-chemistry: m. d. forensic medicine m. s. anatomy; d. p. h.: m. d. (spm) : dcp. dfm. ' 4. his objection to the selection or the scheduled caste candidate can be disposed of easily. it is manifest from c1. (a) of sub-rule (1) that 14% of the seats are reserved for scheduled castes. learned counsel's contention is that there are only four seats available, 14% of four seats is less than one and. therefore, to allot one whole seat for the schedule caste candidate is not consistent with the said.....
Judgment:

Sambasiva Rao, C.J

1. Our learned brother Ramachandra Rao, dismissed Writ Petition No. 4665/78 and the unsuccessful writ petitioner has preferred this writ appeal,

2. The appellant sought a writ of mandamus directing the respondent to admit him to the first year M. D. Course in paediatrics, in Guntur Medical College, There were four respondents to the writ petition and to the writ appeal also they are respondents. The material facts of the case may be briefly noticed. In April 1978, the appellant applied for admission to the post-graduate course in Paediatrics and two other specialties. He appeared for the entrance examination held on 6th Aug., 1978. He secured 116 out of 150 marks thereby securing seventh rank, There were four seats available for the M. D. Degree Course in Paediatrics in the Andhra and Nagarjuna Medical Colleges. One of the four seats was filled up with a scheduled caste candidate and another by a Backward Class candidate, The other tare seats were available for open competition. One of those seats was filled up by a candidate with Roll No. 2112, who secured 130 out of 150 marks There is no substantial dispute to the filling up of the above three seats though the learned counsel for the appellant has raised some sort of an objection to the allotment of the seats to the Scheduled Caste and Backward Classes candidates, The fourth seat was filled up by a service candidate with Roll No. 2067 who has secured only 85 out of 150. As we have pointed out the appellant does not challenge the admission of the candidate with Roll No. 2112 who was admitted into one of the two seats available for open competition since he had secured more marks than him. His objection is mainly to the selection of the service candidate and the reason for the complaint is that the latter has secured less marks than the appellant. That was the challenge before the learned single Judge but before us Sri Suryaprakasarao, learned counsel for the appellant, has faintly challenged the selection of the other candidate vlz., the Scheduled Caste Candidate also. Before we notice the contentions of the learned counsel we would like to read R. 2 of the Rules made for selection of candidates for admission to post-graduate courses in the medical colleges of the Andhra Pradesh State, on the basis of which the appellant's learned counsel has advanced his arguments.

3. '2. Special Reservations:-

(1) (a) 14% and 4% of seats for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes respectively and 25% of seats for Backward Class shall be minimum enforcement in the subjects as specified in R. 1 (a). In subjects where the number of seats in the Degree Course is four or more, the reservation will apply in Degree and Diploma Courses separately if the number of seats are less than four in the Degree Course, the reservation will apply after adding the number of seats. if any, in the concerned Diploma. In case there are no seats in Diploma for such subjects with less than four seats in the Degree course reservation will not apply.

(b) No reservation shall be followed in respect of State-wide courses and super specialities (2nd Post-graduate Degree) Courses.

(2) 50% of the seats in the following specialities and 154; of the seats in all other specialities Shall be reserved for the candidates who are selected by the Andhra Pradesh Public Service commission for appointment to Andhra Pradesh Medical Services. Candidates selected in reserved quota and in Open competition shall be counted for this purpose,

M. D. Pathology:

M.D. Pharmacology:

M. D. Micro-Biology

M. D. Physiology.

M. D. Bio-Chemistry:

M. D. Forensic Medicine

M. S. Anatomy;

D. P. H.:

M. D. (SPM) :

DCP.

DFM. '

4. His objection to the selection or the Scheduled Caste Candidate can be disposed of easily. It is manifest from C1. (a) of sub-rule (1) that 14% of the seats are reserved for Scheduled Castes. Learned counsel's contention is that there are only four seats available, 14% of four seats is less than one and. therefore, to allot one whole seat for the Schedule Caste Candidate is not consistent with the said provision. He compares this with the reservation of 25% seats for Backward Classes. In this case 25% reservation clearly comes to one seat, and, therefore, there cannot be any objection to the allotment of one seat to the Backward Classes. Compared with this, 14% out of four seats comes to less than one seat and, therefore, the selection of a Scheduled Caste candidate to one of the seats is illegal. This argument is untenable for the reason that this percentage cannot be worked out to mathematical precision. It is true that 14% of four seats is less than one, but at the same time, it should be noticed that It is more than half. When it is more than half it can be rounded off to one; Otherwise it would be defeating the very purpose of reservation provided far in sub-cl . (a) Therefore, this contention is

5. The main concentration of the attack is on the reservation made to the service candidates and selection of one service candidate for the fourth sear, even though the service candidate secured lesser marks than the appellant. The reservation to the service candidates is contained in sub-rule (a), This reservation is challenged on two grounds. The reservation postulated by sub-rule (2) in favour of service candidates is not founded on any reasonable classification, which has a relevant bearing to the object sought to be served by the selection. It is, therefore contended that the reservation is arbitrary and repugnant to Article 14 of the Constitution. The second ground of attack is that if the reservations contained in Rr. 1 and 2 are taken into consideration, more than 50% of the seats go for reservation leaving little for open competition. For this reason also the reservation made in sub-rule (2) is illegal.

6.We are wholly unconvinced by the aforesaid two grounds of criticism. It cannot be said that the reservation of service candidates is not on reasonable classification which has a nexus with the object that is sought to be served. Undoubtedly, the reservation made in favour of the candidates 'who are selected by the Andhra Pradesh Public Service Commission for appointment to the Andhra Pradesh Medical Service.'' is eminently reasonable. It should be first remembered that this reservation is for post-graduation studies. Therefore, the Government which finances these medical studies, as well as the medical services that are rendered in the State, naturally and logically felt that the candidates who have been selected by the Public Service Commission for appointment to the Andhra Pradesh Medical Service should have a reservation in the post -graduate studies. The main purpose of the selection to the post -graduate studies is to have the best talent available so that when these graduate doctors in service complete their post-graduation courses they could better serve the people for whose benefit the medical service has been constituted by the Andhra Pradesh Government .Even to put it generally, post-graduation studies are intended to have better qualified doctors and medical personnel to serve the people of the State with greater equipment, better knowledge and excellence. This consideration should apply with greater farce to the medical service maintained by the Government. It shall not be forgotten that it is one of the basic functions of the State to create adequate medical service for the health and medical care of the people. To discharge that function and duty towards the people, the State has created the Andhra Pradesh Medical Service. Thus medical graduates who have been appointed to this service after selection by the Andhra Pradesh Public Service Commission are now sought to be given reservation under sub-rule to of (2) of Rule 2. This is clearly to serve the main purpose of the post-graduate studies vlz., to render better and more qualitative service to the people. So, along with the other fresh candidates the Government of Andhra Pradesh, which finances the entire Post-graduation education and medical Service, thought it reasonable to reserve certain seats in these courses. The category of candidates who belong to the Andhra Pradesh Medical Service and who have been selected by the Andhra Pradesh Public Service Commission are put into a Separate class for reservation. These doctors have already been in the medical service, whose appointment has been regularised by virtue of the selection made by the Public Service Commission. The anxiety of the Government can be well understood if they make provision for providing amenities to the doctors who are already in the Andhra Pradesh Medical Service for being trained in post-graduate courses.

These candidates who are already in the medical service certainly constitute one class or category as they have already been charged with the responsibility and task of catering to the medical requirements of the people of the State. Therefore, these service candidates are placed into a separate class or category which; classification is eminently reasonable. First and foremost the State should see that the personnel in the medical service are adequately equipped with latest techniques and post-graduate excellence. So this classification which is a classification of the service candidates into one category for purposes of reservation, is eminently reasonable.

7. By no stretch of imagination could the classification be said to be unrelated to the purpose that is sought to be served. As we have already noticed, the purpose is to have the best available candidates for post-graduate medical courses, so that the better, qualitative medical services are rendered to the people of the State. Who else could render these medical services more effectively than those who have already been selected into medical service and who have already been charged with the task of rendering medical service to the people of the State? Thus the classification of the service candidates into one category is intimately connected with the purpose that is sought to be achieved by the selection. For these reasons we reject the contention of Mr. Suryaprakasa Rao in this behalf.

8. We may also refer to two or three decisions cited by him. The first decision learned counsel for the appellant cited is P. Rajendran v. Stare of Madras : [1968]2SCR786 . The question is Rajendran's case was whether the district wise allocation was violative of Art So, fact-wise that case has no bearing on the present question. However learned counsel relied upon the following passage in Para 11:

'Further whether selection is from the socially and educationally backward classes or from the general pool. the object of selection must be to secure the best possible talent from the two courses. If that is the object, it must necessarily follow that that object would be defeated if seats are allocated district by district. It cannot be and has not been denied that the object of selection is to secure the best possible talent from the two sources so that the country may have the best possible doctors.'

Relying upon this passage, learned counsel contends that the object is to secure best possible talent. There cannot be two views about this. As the Supreme Court itself has pointed out the object of the selection is to secure best possible talent from the sources available so that the country may have best possible doctors. Now to make a reservation in favour of the doctors who are already in the medical service is to serve this very purpose of making available to the country best possible doctors. This reservation enables the doctors who are in the Government service to lake a post-graduate course and equip themselves with better knowledge and greater techniques. Thus the governmental medical service which largely caters to the medical needs of the people will have best possible doctors. Thus the object is clearly served by the reservation contained m R. 2 (2). As it was observed in the same decision, the classification has to be justified on the basis of the nexus between the classification and object to be achieved. This is completely achieved by the reservation contained in R. 2 (2) Therefore, this decision does not help the contention of the learned counsel.

9. The next decision cited by the learned counsel is State of A. P v. U.S. V. Balaram, : [1972]3SCR247 . The bare facts of this case must be noted. At that time in the State of Andhra pradesh there were two courses which provided qualifying examination For seeking entrance into the medical course. One was HSC course and the other PUC course. 40% of the seats were reserved for the HSC candidates. This was despite the introduction of the common entrance test. The challenge to the reservation of 40% of seats to the HSC candidates was mounted on the ground that both the HSC candidates and P U C candidates, though they came two sources, were subjected to a common entrance test and selection was made on the basis of the performance of the candidates in that test. Therefore, it was contended that the further reservation of 40% seats in favour of HSC candidates was arbitrary. This contention was upheld by the Supreme Court. Vaidialingam .J speaking for the Court observed in para, 51:

'It is no doubt open to the State to prescribe the sources from which the candidates are declared eligible for applying for admission to the Medical College; but when once a common entrance test has been prescribed for all the candidates on the basis of which selection is to be made, the rule providing further that 40% of the seats will have to be reserved for the H.S C. candidates is arbitrary. In the first place, after a common test has been prescribed. there cannot be a valid classification of the P.U.C. and H.S.C. candidates. Even assuming that such as a classification is valid the said classification has no reasonable relation to the object sought to be achieved, namely, selecting the best candidates for admission to the Medical Colleges The reservation of 40% to the H.S.C. candidates has no reasonable relation or nexus to the said object.'

10. Relying on these observations and the ratio of the decision the appellants counsel urged that in the present case also there was a common entrance test not only to the fresh candidates but also to the service candidates and, therefore, the further reservation in favour of the service candidates is bad, as the further reservation for the H.S.C, candidates was held to be bad in Balaram's case. This argument cannot be accepted because the decision of the Supreme Court was rendered in an altogether different context Selection was made to the first year M.B.B.S. course from the sources namely. H.S.C. candidates and PUC candidates. The reservation in favour of the HSC candidates was on the basis that the academic requirements of the two courses were different and, therefore; some weightage in favour of H.S.C, candidates should be given. This was rejected hp the Supreme Court on the ground that whatever might have been the academic qualifications of the two categories of candidates, both of them were subject to the common entrance test an the basis of which final selection was made. Therefore. the further reservation in favour of the H.S.C, candidates offended the quality rule. Such is not the case here. It is a post graduate course unlike the graduation course to which selection was made in Balaram's case. Post-graduation course is intended for providing better qualification and better equipment for the medical graduates so that specialised services are rendered to the people. Medical graduates are given training in all the subjects in a general way but during post graduation they are trained in specialised subject. These specialised courses enable the medical graduates, who have gone through the post-graduation courses to equip themselves with better knowledge in different specialisations.

11. There is no gainsaying the fact that specialists are required in various fields like Paediatrics etc. While a medical graduate can only give a preliminary or rudimentary treatment, a specialist alone can go deep and give most effective treatment. This is the very purpose of having post-graduation courses. That is why the Government expressed its anxiety by providing for reservation for service candidates under R. 2 (2), so that the medical service maintained by them contains specialists in various subjects. That is why, after a common entrance test has been held, the candidates are selected on the basis of their performance in that test according to the reservations. The reservation made for service candidates serves the real purpose of rendering more effective service by the Governmental medical institutions. Therefore, this decision has no bearing on the question before us.

12. Reliance is also placed on the decision of the Rajasthan High Court in Surendrakumar v. State, . It is also a case of admission into the first year graduation course. Two seats were reserved for admission for the children of Registered Medical Practitioners in medical service of the State. The Rajasthan High Court held that this is not a proper classification since it had no reasonable relation to the abject sought to be achieved by the selection. Reservation of seats into the graduation course is vitally different from the reservation of the seats in post-graduate Courses, because the latter is study of a speciality. That apart, m Surendrakumar's case reservation was made for children of Registered Medical practitioners, which had no reasonable relation to the object of selecting the best possible candidates to the medical courses. But, here the reservation under R. 2 (2) is for doctors who are already in service and from whom effective medical services to the people of this country is expected. Therefore, to enable them by giving weightage in the selection to the post-graduate courses is to serve the purpose of achieving excellence in rendering medical service to the people of the State. Therefore, these observations of the Rajasthan High Court do not help the contention of the learned counsel.

13. All the decisions relied upon by the appellant's learned counsel relate to the selection for admission into graduation course. As we have already pointed out, selection into a regular M.B.B.S. course is vitally different from the selection into specialities in the post-graduate courses. The selection into the latter course is motivated by an endeavour of securing better trained and better equipped doctors. While an ordinary medical graduate can render general medical service a person who is a postgraduate can render specialised service in the subject in which he has specialized. That is, why the Government thought it necessary to equip their own doctors with greater facilities for undergoing post graduation course. It is the fundamental duty of the Government to render to the people specialised medical service also. It is to carry out that purpose the reservation has been made under R. 2(2). Consequently, the argument advance challenging the reservation on the ground of Art. 14 cannot be accepted.

14. Then coming to the second argument that the total reservation exceeds 50% of the seats, in support of this contention, learned counsel relied on M. R Balaji v. State of Mysore, : AIR1963SC649 , Gajendragadkar J. (as he then was) rendering the decision in that case, observed that the demand for technicians, scientists, doctors, economists, engineers and experts for the further economic advancement of the country is so great that it would cause grave prejudice to national interests, if considerations in merit are completely excluded by whole-sale reservation of seats in all technical, medical or engineering colleges or institutions of that kind Therefore, considerations of natural (national) interest and the interests of the community or society as a whole cannot be ignored in determining the question as to whether the special provision contemplated by Article 15(4) can be special provision which excludes the rest of the society altogether. Then at a later stage the learned Judge, observed: 'speaking generally and in a broad way, a special provision should be less than 50 per cent: how much less than 50 per cent would depend upon the relevant prevailing circumstances in each case'. Now this defect of reservation of more than 50 per cent for any particular category or making special reservation exceeding 50 per cent to any particular class or category of candidates does not exist in R. 2. Only 14% of the seats are reserved for Scheduled Castes. 4% for Scheduled Tribes and 25% of the seats for Backward Classes. This reservation is made in subrule (1). Coming to sub-rule (2), 50% of the seats in the specialities enumerated in the sub-rule and 15% of the seats in other specialities are reserved for the service candidates. But the latter limb of subrule (2) is more important. It reads:

'Candidates selected in reserved quota and in open competition shall be counted for this purpose.'

Therefore if service candidates have been selected as per the reservation in the category of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes or Backward Classes, no more reservation is permissible to the service candidates. This is the very important consideration which weighed with our learned brother and rightly so in our opinion, It may be that in some cases there may not be any service candidates in Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Backward Classes, but that does not invalidate the Rule and reservation made therein. Furthermore, there is no special reservation or more than 50% in favour of any particular class of category mentioned in Rule 2. Therefore, we do not think that the observations made by Gajendragadkar In M. R. Balaji v. State of Mysore, would invalidate the reservation postulated by sub-rule (2) of R. 2.

15. These are the arguments advanced by the learned counsel for the appellant in support of the appeal. None of these arguments can be accepted. We are, therefore, in agreement with our learned brother in dismissing the writ petition.

16. In the result, the writ appeal fails and is dismissed. Having regard to the circumstances that the appellant is student, we make no order as to costs. Advocate's fee Rs. 150/-.

17. Appeal dismissed.


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