A degree in physiotherapy may not be an option for some in the physically challenged category. Maharashtra Council for Occupational Physiotherapy (MCOP) has come out with draft guidelines holding visually, hearing and speech-impaired candidates ineligible for admission to Bachelor of Occupational Therapy (BOTh) and Bachelor of Physiotherapy (BPTh) courses.
Additional government pleader G W Mattos informed the Bombay high court on Tuesday that the guidelines are based on a report of a three-member expert committee. He submitted the report to court which
The court was hearing a petition filed by Kritika Purohit, a visually impaired student of D G Ruparel College. She moved the HC last year after the Directorate of Technical Education rejected her application to appear for the common medical entrance test for professional medical course.
The expert committee held such students ineligible on the grounds that it is necessary to identify and grade impairment qualitatively to chalk out effective treatment programme as a keen sense of observational skill was required in these courses.
A division bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice Roshan Dalvi directed the state to take into consideration the directives of chief commissioner for the persons with disability to treat all handicapped at par. The state however opposed admission of a "complete blind person" to a professional court against MCI guidelines. But coming to the student's aid,
The HC directed the state to admit Kritika for the BPTh course after permitting her to appear for MH-CET., and the willingness of Maharashtra University of Health Sciences to support blind candidates.
MUHS , which conducts examination for the courses, has expressed willingness to provide complete support to blind candidates. in case allowed to be admitted to BOTh and BPTh courses. Relying on the law governing disabilities, Kritika's lawyer pointed out that both courses did not fall within the purview of MCI, yet the state was applying its guidelines.