Sindh High Court Rejects Appeal To Lower MDCAT Passing Marks: PMC

Sindh High Court rejects appeal to lower MDCAT passing marks: PMC

Pakistan Medical Commission (PMC) on Friday said that Sindh High Court (SHC) has rejected the application of eight dental colleges in Sindh to lower MDCAT passing marks

ISLAMABAD, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 30th Jul, 2021 ) :Pakistan Medical Commission (PMC) on Friday said that Sindh High Court (SHC) has rejected the application of eight dental colleges in Sindh to lower MDCAT passing marks.

According to PMC spokesman, eight dental colleges in Sindh along with some students who were aspirants for admission to dental programs had challenged the admission criteria and specifically the mandatory requirement of having passed the MDCAT exam with a minimum of 60% marks before the Sindh High Court.

The petitioners sought injunctions to restrain the commission from finalizing the admissions prior to filling all vacant seats in the dental colleges and suspension of the MDCAT result and the fixing of 60% passing marks for MDCAT hence enabling dental colleges to admit students who have not qualified the MDCAT or alternatively lowering the standard of merit.

This is also one of the main issues on which the President Pakistan Association of Private Medical and Dental Institutions (PAMI) recently has been vociferously alleging that the Commission is destroying dental colleges by insisting on maintaining a 60% passing marks in MDCAT and making the MDCAT a mandatory condition for admission.

The contention of the dental colleges and President of PAMI has been that BDS program is treated as a second option to MBBS and hence its merit should be lowered, he added.

He said that the Pakistan Medical Commission Act 2020 mandates that the curriculum and standards of medical and dental education be set by the Commission and makes the qualifying of the MDCAT as mandatory for admission to both medical and dental colleges.

The commission has consistently maintained that the standards for medical and dental education need to be improved and enhanced rather than reduced as being demanded by some private colleges and students, he added.

He said that the commission has also clarified that it is not the mandate of the Commission to ensure that every allocated seat of a college is filled by the commission and it is for the college to ensure that it finds a balance in terms of quality of education and facilities offered and the fee charged to attract students to choose a college.

Lowering the merit simply to facilitate the financial and business interests of any given private college is neither the mandate of the commission and nor is it conducive to the improvement of medical and dental education, the spokesman said.

He said that the Sindh High Court dismissed the applications of the dental colleges and students seeking an injunction and held that the Commission had prima facie acted within its powers and correctly in setting the MDCAT passing marks at 60% and requiring it as a mandatory condition for admission to dental colleges.

He said that The decision of the Sindh High Court and the reasons and observations further reaffirm the consistent position of the commission that its principal objective is to improve the quality of education and hence the quality of doctors and dentists which will lead to improved health care for the people of Pakistan.

He said that there can be absolutely no compromise on this and the commercial interests of private colleges, which has led to the recent spate of public attacks on the Commission by the President PAMI, cannot be a factor leading to lowering of merit and quality.