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  • Bill to amend the Medical Council of India Act passed in LS

    Published on August 20, 2010

    Amid din, the Lok Sabha on Friday passed a Bill to amend the Medical Council of India Act to replace the existing MCI board, that is facing corruption charges, with a seven-member panel of eminent doctors.

    The corruption-ridden MCI, set up 76 years ago to regulate medical education in the country, has already been dissolved through an ordinance in May this year.

    A six-member panel of doctors, led by gastro-enterologist S K Sarin, has replaced its board of governors.

    Introducing the Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Bill, 2010, Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad had said certain events in April had evoked public demand for immediate action.

    One suggestion was bringing in an altogether new body, while another idea was to amend the MCI Act, 1956.

    The amendment bill deems that the MCI shall stand superseded and the President, Vice President and other members of the council shall vacate their offices and have no claim for any compensation.

    It says the council shall be reconstituted within a period of one year from the date of supersession.

    Until a new council is constituted, the board of Governors shall exercise the powers and perform the functions of the council under the new bill.

    MCI president Ketan Desai was arrested on 22nd April by the CBI for allegedly accepting a bribe of Rs two crore to give permission to a Punjab medical college to recruit a fresh batch of students without having requisite infrastructure.

    The MCI was established in 1934 under the Indian Medical Council Act, 1933, now repealed, with the main function of establishing uniform standards of higher qualifications in medicine and recognition of medical institutions in India and abroad.

    In 1956, the old Act was repealed and a new one enacted.

    The Bill was passed amid a din, as dissatisfied by the quantum of hike in the salaries approved by the Cabinet, members from non-BJP opposition parties stalled proceedings in the Lok Sabha.