The Medical Council of India (MCI) has been reconstituted by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and Dr. K.K. Talwar has been appointed as the Chairman of the new Board of Governors for the MCI.
Dr. Talwar has been a familiar figure at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and has also been the Director of the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh. Other members nominated on the board subsequent to the promulgation of the ordinance extending the supersession of the MCI by another year are Prof. K.S. Sharma from Tata Memorial Hospital, Prof Harbhajan Singh Rassam from Max Hospital, Dr. Rajiv Chintaman Yeravdekar from Symbiosis International University and Dr. Purushotham Lal, chairman of Metro Hospital.
The term of the present members of the Board of Governors, headed by Dr. S.K. Sarin, ended on 14 May 2011.Also, another clause has been added to the functioning of the new board that makes it necessary for all members to work as full-time officials of the MCI.A ministry official said that the governing body is supposed to be a five member body and the names of other members are still being finalized.
Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad had also been miffed with the board for its unilateral decision to introduce the controversial Common Entrance Test (CET) for graduate and postgraduate medical academic programmes in India.
According to the notification, a single entrance examination was to be introduced that would be conducted for MBBS and MD courses offered by all 271 medical colleges in the country, of which 138 are operated by the government and 133 are under private management. The health ministry had been put under a lot of pressure by state governments such as those of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka to abandon the idea for the CET.