KATHMANDU, Oct 15: Senior orthopedic surgeon Dr Govinda KC, who on Monday retired from the TU Teaching Hospital, has warned of starting fresh hunger strikes if his demands for reforms in the medical education sector are not met.
Talking to the media, Dr KC said that he would start an indefinite hunger strike from October 13 if his demands, which include full implementation of the past accord signed between him and the government is not addressed within the next 11 days starting from Monday. It will be his 17th hunger strike.
Dr KC’s other demands include guarantee of fairness and transparency in the new hiring of university officials and end to the practice of hiring staffs at universities and academia on the basis of political affiliation.
Issuing a statement last month, Dr KC had said that the culture of political appointment was responsible for the reported rise in irregularities and widespread corruption in the Tribhuvan University Service Commission.
Dr KC has been voicing support for students protesting against the medical colleges that have long been ripping them off. For months now, hundreds of MBBS and MD students have been demanding return of extra fees charged by the medical colleges exceeding the government’s ceiling.
The medical colleges have been charging up to Rs 5.5 million from each student for five-year MBBS course although the government’s policy restricts them from charging above Rs 3.85 million inside the Kathmandu Valley and Rs 4.245 outside the valley.
In response to student protests, the Association of Private Medical and Dental Colleges of Nepal, an association of private medical colleges, last month threatened to stall the admission process for 2076/77 batch of MBBS and MD students if the government continued its ‘clampdown’ on the private medical education sector.