Can Ayush doctors perform surgery: SC seeks Centre’s response

The apex court has sought the response of the Centre and various ministries on a petition, challenging an earlier governmental decision to allow alternative medicine practitioners to perform surgeries.

The Mumbai-based Association of Medical Consultants has made the Ayush, Health, Law, and Justice ministries, besides the Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM) respondents in the case.

The petitioner argued that the Centre’s decision violates Articles 14 (right to equality), 19 (Freedom of Speech and Occupation), and 21 (Protection of life and Personal Liberty) of the Constitution as long as “it enables the Practitioners of Indian System of Medicine/ Homeopathy/ Alternative Medicines to practice Allopathy/Modern Medicine and perform Surgeries.”

The CCIM introduced the Indian Medicine Central Council (Post Graduate Ayurveda Education) Amendment Regulations on November 20, 2020, authorizing the PG practitioners in Shalya and Shalakya streams of Ayurveda to undergo training in performing 39 general surgery procedures and 19 other procedures.

The amendment legally allowed the PG scholars of the streams to independently perform the surgeries or procedures after the completion of their degree.

CCIM is the statutorily made-up body under the Ministry of AYUSH (Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, and Homeopathy).

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