NEIGRIHMS Director Dr. Nalin Mehta has said the allegations and statements over the reservation policy and examination procedures are unreasonable and unjust.
“I do not have the powers to make any reservation. We are a central government hospital (institution), we follow whatever is laid down by the constitution in terms of the percentage for reservation,” he said.
He clarified that NEIGRIHMS strictly follows the reservation policy laid down by the Constitution for various categories, such as SC, ST, OBC, persons with disabilities, and economically weaker sections as well as the general category. The director asserts that the institute cannot violate these percentages and risks serious consequences if it does so.
Dr Mehta however said that ST candidates can get more seats, since, apart from the reserved quota, if they perform well they can get the unreserved (general) seats.
“There are times there are more people than the total number of seats for ST because some of them have done well enough to take unreserved seats. But I cannot increase the percentage of ST, SC or OBC,” Dr. Mehta said.
He also said that NEIGRIHMS lacks the capacity or the competence to conduct an examination on its own and according to him earlier there were paper based tests which are now computer based.
“We do not have the infrastructure; we do not have the technical expertise. So this is outsourced on the basis of tendering. We have let out the tender people apply whoever’s bid is the lowest they get to conduct the examination. Through the Ministry of Health we have a Memorandum of Understanding with one Company which does recruitment examinations also for RIMS Imphal and RIPANS Aizawl,” Dr. Mehta said.
The Director tried to address the recent uproar where candidates from the state had to go to Guwahati to appear for a test even as he added that within Shillong there are few places where there is capacity available and these were used to the optimum and since the number were huge some were accommodated outside the state.
Dr. Mehta also urged those who have concerns or seek changes to submit memoranda to the Ministry of Health. He emphasised that any amendments to the current system must be made through the appropriate channels and authorities.
He also expressed disappointment with the aggressive and threatening behaviour of some representatives. He advocated for civilised discussions and cooperation to address issues, emphasising that both the institute and the representatives are working for the benefit of the people.
“We don’t have to intimidate or become aggressive or threaten each other,” Dr. Mehta said.