KATHMANDU, June 20: Since Friday, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CIB) of Nepal Police has arrested 36 doctors practicing at different hospitals and clinics from 10 districts on the charge of using fake academic certificates for medical studies.
Preliminary investigation by CIB showed that the doctors were found to have used fake intermediate or +2 certificates for abroad medical studies mainly in India. CIB said the intermediate or +2 certificates of 35 of the 36 doctors are from Patna, India.
In the second phase of the 'Operation Quack' launched by the CIB with active participation of the Nepal Medical Council and Higher Secondary Education Board for the past four months, the police arrested 36 doctors -- 13 from Kathmandu, two from Lalitpur, one in Jhapa, one in Sunsari, three in Morang, two in Dhanusha, nine in Parsa, three in Chitwan, one in Kaski and one in Dang. Of them six are females.
“After keeping the suspect doctors under surveillance for months, we arrested them for further investigation after seeking permission from Kathmandu District Court,” DIG Nawaraj Silwal, director of the CIB, said. Kathmandu District Court on Sunday remanded them to five days in custody.
According to DIG Silwal, they have scrutinized some other medical professionals who have allegedly obtained medical degrees and even license from the Nepal Medical Council by using fake certificates.
“The recent spate of busts has raised serious questions about Nepal's medical establishment and role of regulatory bodies,” DIG said adding.
He also hinted that more doctors will face invetigation in the coming weeks.
Of those arrested doctors, a few of them are reputed doctors practicing in renowned hospitals and clinics, but majority of them had received medical licenses only within the last few years, according to SP Dibesh Lohani, the spokesperson of CIB.
CIB had a few months ago arrested 17 doctors in the first phase of the 'Operation Quack' and an air pilot under operation hawk. All of them were released after paying Rs 30,000 each as bail to the District Court. The doctors have been charged by CIB under faking certificates, corruption and faking government documents seeking imprisonments in line with the Nepal Medical Council Act-2020.
Meanwhile, the accused 17 doctors were also suspended by the Nepal Medical Council. But the court is yet to issue its final verdicts. If proved guilty of the charges they might face up to three years imprisonment along with the financial penalties.
CIB has also asked members of the public to inform about such doctors if any.