Mumbai: In a setback to the petitioners challenging new rules for admission to any graduate medical course (MBBS), dental course (BDS) or postgraduate course (MD/MS) in government or private medical colleges in the country through the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET), the Bombay High Court on Monday declined to interfere into the matter and asked Maharashtra to go ahead with its domicile policy.

Lifting a stay on the admissions to various courses through NEET, the court, however, asked the Maharashtra Government to prepare a separate list for candidates from outside the state, but restrained the government from putting that out without its review.

The court was hearing petitions filed by Mahatma Gandhi Vidyamandir´s Karmaveer Bhausaheb Hiray Dental College and Hospital, a private unaided college, and the students from outside Maharashtra, challenging the rules denying admissions to applicants from other states in these courses.

The High Court had on August 30 stayed a government’s resolution that made it mandatory for all deemed medical universities and colleges to follow the NEET merit list for admitting students.

More than 20,000 students had registered for the centralised admission process through NEET for admissions to 1,675 seats in deemed institutes in Maharashtra. The selection list was supposed to be published by September 3, but it was stayed by the High Court till it decides on those petitions.

The petitioners have challenged the rules that allow the benefit of reservation only to local students, questioning how such domicile rules could be applied in private unaided colleges.