One of the final year students who raised the complaint alleged that she was deliberately failed in an examination as she did not contribute money. The allegation was also made by her father, prompting a committee to probe into the matter to check her academic performance and also to find out about the money collection. “The committee analysed her performance and concluded that her performance was not up to the mark,” said Dr A Jamila, Vice Principal, who headed the committee.
Meanwhile, Dr P Balaji, Dean of the hospital said, “The money was not collected through official instruction but done by students on their own.” He added that after the hospital committee probe, no professor was suspended. “The investigation report would be submitted to higher authorities. Examiners for this particular case will not be posted at other exams until the probe was completed,” Dr Balaji said.
Students pursuing the final year MBBS course at Stanley Medical College levelled the charge in April, following which the Tamil Nadu Dr MGR Medical University filed a report with the government on the matter. “I received a WhatsApp message just before the final examinations in April, asking us to pay a huge amount for their accommodation and food. Most of us paid,”a final year student said on condition of anonymity.
Health Secretary J Radhakrishnan said the government had ordered a detailed probe. “I have asked the Director of Medical Education to enquire into it. Appropriate action will be taken if allegations were found to be true,” he said. The government, however, has not received any formal complaint so far, he said adding it was also not clear if anyone else collected money from the students. This too needs to be ascertained, he said. In this regard, he said he had recently received a complaint from the father of a student that his ward had failed the practical exam, despite money being paid to the college. A few students said collecting money for examiners has been a decade-long practice. However, officials from the medical college said that the money was not used for any such purposes because only this year were local examiners enlisted over the pandemic and food was provided from department messes.
Another committee that investigated the money collection was headed by Dr Jaswant, Head of Surgical Gastroenterology. He said that out of the 43 students who appeared for the exam, over 20 did not pay, but most passed the exam. “The money was collected for miscellaneous purposes as many have been on continuous pandemic duty. We would have initiated action if there was any complaint before the exams itself,” he said.