The general body of Medical Council of India, which regulates medical education in India, has allowed corporates and for-profit institutions to open medical colleges in the country.
The decision came nearly two months after the government think-tank Niti Aayog recommended privatisation of medical colleges. However, corporates would have to wait for approval from a Supreme Court panel and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare before applying for new colleges.
At present, only government or registered not-for-profit societies or charitable trusts are permitted to run medical colleges. Foreign companies are not allowed to invest in these societies or trusts.
Despite facing resistance from a group of MCI doctors, the decision was supported by a majority of MCI general body members.
“Many private institutions are anyway making profit through non-transparent and illegal means. If we legalise corporates they would charge a very high fee, but they will be forced to pay income tax,” said an MCI member, who was present at the meeting.