PESHAWSAR: Abolition of two per cent admission quota on reserved seats for doctors’ children have been affecting the public sector colleges as many of the medical teachers have left for private medical colleges for opportunities, including reserved seats for their children.

Over 20 teachers, mostly from basic sciences departments, have left eight public sector colleges for private institutions in the past few years, said a medical teacher.

Some faculties have shrunken to the extent where they could face problems if Pakistan Medical and Dental Council carried out an inspection to check strength of teachers in the public sector medical colleges.

In 2000, the Supreme Court abolished the quota system in medical colleges and ordered only merit-based admissions. The apex court had also ordered revision of the verdict and all reserved seats, except for disabled students, were to be done away with after 2007. It wasn’t reviewed and only teachers have been affected by it.

“The decision should be reviewed,” a medical teacher said. The public sector colleges have 1,118 seats, including 636 merit-based, while 472 are being filled by students from Fata, backwards areas, Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir, and Afghan refugees. According to the court’s decision, all these quotas stand abolished.

“The government allotted eight more seats to Afghan refugees, which were reserved for Bangladesh residents, but who didn’t avail. Afghans have now 12 seats, but teachers are being denied to continue admitting sons and daughters on reserved seats,” he said.

Besides, the court instructed slashing the quota for Fata by 30 per cent, but seats have been increased to 128 now. A request made by teachers in 2011 was rejected by the health department, saying that restoration of reserved seats for doctors’ children could violate the court’s decision.

Teachers are left with no choice, but to leave the official colleges for better salaries and opportunities and getting seats for their children in the private colleges.

Published in Dawn, January 30th, 2016