A notice from the Medical Council of India (MCI) states that people with medical degrees from colleges in Pakistan-Occupied-Kashmir cannot practice in India.

doctor wearing mask and holding stethoscopeImage for representation
Health Medical Thursday, August 13, 2020 - 17:59

A new public notice from the Medical Council of India (MCI) states that people with medical degrees from colleges in PoK cannot practice medicine under law in India. “This is to inform all concerned that entire territories of UT of Jammu Kashmir and Ladakh are an integral part of India. Pakistan is in illegal and forcible occupation of a part of the territory. Accordingly, any medical institution in Pakistan-occupied Jammu Kashmir and Ladakh requires permission/recognition under the IMC Act, 1956. Such permission has not been granted to any medical college in PoJKL,” a public notice issued by MCI stated.

Talking to WION news channel over the phone, the president of Jammu & Kashmir Medical Council president Dr Saleem Ur Rehman said, “We have standard guidelines as per MCI. Anyone coming from any country will have to get his qualifications verified from the Ministry of Home affairs. Then we do the registration.”

The MCI notice also said, “Therefore, any qualification obtained from medical colleges located within these illegally occupied areas of India shall not entitle a person for grant of registration under the Indian Medical Council Act, to practise modern medicine in India.”

The announcement comes after the Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan announced that Pakistan would be extending generous scholarship to around 1600 Kashmiris. Many Kashmiri students, who have attended medical colleges in PoK because of the cheaper fees, won't have their degrees recognized by the MCI, and cannot practice medicine in India. Further, they cannot attempt any higher exam as their qualification won't even be considered a foreign degree.

The Registrar of MCI in J&K, Vijay Gupta, told WION that an order in this regard has been issued.

In December last year, the Jammu and Kashmir High Court had asked the Government of India to consider recognising the medical degree of a Kashmiri woman who studied from a college in PoK after the Medical Council of India did not grant her registration, a senior official said.

"The Home Ministry, Ministry of External Affairs and Health Ministry then examined the matter and informed the high court that medical institutions in areas of PoJKL have not been granted permission and recognition under the Indian Medical Council Act," the official said.

"The high court had asked Government of India to publicise this fact so that students are not misled in obtaining medical qualifications from institutions in PoJKL," the official explained.

The Indian government has repeatedly asserted that the entire Union territories of Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh, are an integral and inalienable part of India.

PTI Inputs

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