A relief to nursing colleges in state, as the bench of Justice Sunil Shukre and Justice Anil Kilor of Bombay High Court has directed Maharashtra State Board of Nursing and Paramedical Education (MSBNPE) to consider the proposal of Dr Keshav Baliram Hedgewar Paryayi Shiksha Mandal, Samta Nagar, Wardha, the petitioner to start the General Nursing and Midwifery (GNM) course atWardha from the year 2020-21, on its own merit. The High Court further made it clear that unless the decision of derecognition of the course is published in Official Gazette as provided under Section 15 of the Act, 1947, about derecognition of qualification to GNM course, it shall be treated that the said course is having recognition of the Indian Nursing Council. A proposal of the petitioner Trustee of the institution Ajay Shrivastav to start General Nursing and Midwifery (GNM) course at Wardha, was rejected by the respondent State Board of Nursing by the Indian Nursing Council, informing the Council has resolved to phase out ‘GNM’ course from the year 2020-21 in compliance with the ‘National Health Policy 2017’.
High Court observed, a decision of the Council to phase out the GNM course from the year 2020-21 or any notification issued in that regard for the information of public in general, would not acquire the element of operativeness and enforceability, unless the same is published in the Official Gazette as required in the law. And in absence of such publication in Official Gazette, it can be said that the process of phasing out GNM course has commenced or is going on. Court further said, it is pertinent to note that even it is the case of the Council that the nature of impugned notifications is only an advisory issued to the State Government intimating the policy decision. The Council in its written notes of argument at page 14, admits in clear terms that on the date when the impugned notifications were issued, there was no declaration about actual withdrawal of recognition to GNM course and the existing GNM schools are still conducting the said course. High Court made it clear, “In the light of discussions made above, we are of the firm view that in absence of a publication in Official Gazette about withdrawal of recognition to GNM course by the Council, the impugned notifications issued by the Council in pursuance to the letter issued by the Government of India, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (Nursing Section), which was based on ‘National Health Policy-2017’, are not binding and obligatory for the Maharashtra State Board. In the present matter admittedly the petitioner has not questioned the legality or correctness of the National Health Policy.”