Lok Sabha on Monday passed the Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Bill to allow a panel of eminent professionals to run the scam-tainted Medical Council of India (MCI), so that medical education can be regulated in the best possible manner. The bill seeks to replace an ordinance issued in September.
Health minister J P Nadda said the bill supersedes the MCI and the powers of the council have been vested in a board of governors (BoG).
The BoG will have eminent personalities and include directors of AIIMS and PGI, Chandigarh. The board will continue to perform till a council is constituted, Nadda said. A separate bill to replace the MCI with National Medical Commission is pending in Parliament.
“This bill has been issued so that medical education can be regulated in the best manner, as MCI turned out to be a massive failure,” Nadda said.
The minister added that the parliamentary panel on health had cautioned in its report that any attempt to overhaul the medical regulatory system in the country would face huge challenges. He said the government was forced to come up with this bill as the oversight committee formed on the Supreme Court’s suggestion had resigned and the MCI could not function. Thereafter, the government issued an ordinance.
Amid allegations of corruption against MCI office-bearers and probes into opaque accreditation to medical colleges, the SC had in May 2016 directed the government to set up an oversight committee with the authority to oversee all statutory functions of MCI till a new legislation was passed.