HC seeks stands of Centre, Delhi govt on petition seeking medical fitness certificate to practitioners of Indian System of Medicine

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New Delhi [India], August 25 (ANI): The Delhi High Court on Wednesday sought the stand of the Centre and Delhi government on a petition seeking to allow and permit the practitioners of the Indian System of Medicine--Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha, and Sowa-Rigpa Systems of Medicine to issue a certificate of medical fitness for the purposes of registration/renewal of driving licenses.

Justice Rekha Palli has asked the counsel of respondents Centre and Delhi Government to take instruction and listed the matter for further hearing on September 3.

The petition was filed by the Integrated Medical Association (AYUS), an association of Ayurveda and Unani practitioners across the country. The petition was filed through Tanya Agarwal and Navneet Kumar.

The petitioner, Integrated Medical Association (AYUS), is a duly registered national organization of institutionally qualified doctors of the Indian System of Medicine since 1988 and was previously known as All India Indian Medicine Graduates Association which has a large number of ayurvedic doctors as members from all across the country.

Advocate Tanya Agarwal urged the Delhi High Court to pass an appropriate writ, order, or direction to the Respondents to correct and modify the (SARTHI) software of the Transport Department and allow the Practitioners of the Indian System of Medicine (Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha and Sowa-Rigpa Systems of Medicine) to issue a certificate of medical fitness for the purposes of registration/renewal of driving licenses.

It also urged the Court to pass an appropriate direction not to discriminate against the practitioners of Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha, and Sowa-Rigpa Systems of Medicine with the MBBS degree holders in issuing the medical fitness certificates.

Advocate Tanya Agarwal said that the Practitioners of the Indian System of Medicine (Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha, and Sowa-Rigpa Systems of Medicine) all across the country are entitled to issue certificates for all necessary purposes including Fitness Certificate for registration/renewal of Driving Licenses and till recently the Zonal Offices of the Transport Department have been accepting Medical Fitness Certificates issued by all registered medical practitioners including the Practitioners of Indian System of Medicine (Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha and Sowa-Rigpa Systems of Medicine).

However recently, the uploaded (SARTHI) software of the Transport Department mentions practitioners holding only MBBS degree eligible to issue such a certificate which is a clear violation of law, rules, and regulations and discrimination against Practitioners of the Indian System of Medicine (Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha and Sowa-Rigpa Systems of Medicine) and as such depriving them of their valuable statutory right because of the anomaly created by the SARTHI software of the Transport Department, the petition said.

As a result, the Zonal Offices of the Transport Department are now not accepting medical fitness certificates issued by the Practitioners of the Indian System of Medicine online, the petition said.

According to the petition till February 2021 the Practitioners of Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha, and Sowa-Rigpa Systems of Medicine were authorized to issue medical certificates for the purposes of Fitness Certificate for registration/renewal of Driving Licenses, but from March 2021 the Respondents have made some changes in its software (SARTHI) wherein it is now mentioned that the medical fitness certificate should be issued by M.B.B.S. doctors only.

Advocate Tanya Agarwal said that the practice by Practitioners of the Indian System of Medicine is regulated by the Central Council of Indian Medicine, a statutory body constituted under the Act of Parliament under the Indian Medicine Central Council (IMCC) Act 1970.

The IMCC authorizes the registered Practitioners of the Indian System of Medicine (Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha, and Sowa-Rigpa Systems of Medicine) to issue the certificate of medical fitness along with all other certificates for all necessary purposes including Fitness Certificate for registration/ renewal of Driving Licenses. (ANI)

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