SC terms AIIMS (Amendment) Act unconstitutional

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New Delhi, May 8 (UNI) In a major victory for former All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) director professor P Venugopal, the Supreme Court today quashed the AIIMS (Amendment) Act as unconstitutional.

According to the impugned amendment the retirement age of the AIIMS director was fixed at 65 years and the maximum tenure for him was 5 years, whichever is earlier.

Dr Venugopal, an eminent cardiologist was removed from his post as he had already crossed the age of 65 years though his retirement was due in July this year.

A bench comprising justices Tarun Chatterjee and Harjit Singh Bedi declared the amendment unconstitutional on the grounds that the entire act was brought in to target the petitioner Dr Venugopal.

The apex court also accepted the contention of the petitioner that the act was a case of hostile discrimination towards him.

Professor T D Dogra was appointed as acting director of the AIIMS and the court also directed the government not to make permanent appointment to the post till the final disposal of the two petitions.

Another petition was filed by the AIIMS faculty association.

The logical consequence of today's judgement is that Dr Venugopal may have to be reinstated and allowed to complete his tenure till July this year.

UNI SC SK KP1144

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