KATHMANDU, August 21: Five days after putting off his 11th and longest fast-unto-death, Dr. Govinda KC warned on Sunday to launch his 12th hunger strike, demanding that the Tribhuvan University (TU)’s decision to provide affiliation to Kathmandu National Medical College of Ghattekulo, Kathmandu, be scrapped.
The controversial medical college is said to belong to the cadres of the CPN-UML.
An executive meeting headed by TU Vice Chancellor Dr. Tirtha Raj Khaniya decided secretly to issue affiliation to Kathmandu National Medical College during Dr. KC’s 11th hunger strike, which was postponed on the 23rd day on August 15.
One of Dr. KC’s major demands is not to allow opening up a new medical college in Kathmandu for 10 years.
TU claimed that the decision to issue affiliation to the medical college was made as per the order of the Supreme Court (SC) to implement its verdict. But, the SC has not directed TU to issue affiliation but to act as per the law.
Two years after its first decision, the SC issued another verdict in another case about providing affiliation to medical colleges six months ago, saying that the agreement with Dr. KC is considered. But TU has been found giving affiliation on the basis of the first decision, ignoring SC’s second verdict.
Issuing a press statement on Sunday, Dr. KC said that TU has gone against the spirit of past agreements and their demands put forward during different strikes.
Dr. KC, a senior orthopedic surgeon at Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital, began his 11th fast-unto-death from July 24; demanding that the government bring the Medical Education Act as per the Mathema Report, slash fees of postgraduate studies in medicine from Rs 3.1 million to Rs 2.2 million, appoint four assistant deans at IOM and campus chief immediately and probe into the irregularities of TU officials and take action against them for snatching IOM rights to decide about medical colleges.
“TU’s recent decision was shameless and irresponsible behavior acted by the government authority. I demand to scrap the decision and respect the past agreements reached with us,” said Dr. KC in the statement. “If my demands are not addressed by bringing the Medical Education Act as recommended by the Mathema Committee, I will launch another hunger strike soon,” he warned.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, holding a meeting at his residence at Baluwatar, directed the parliamentary committee not to table the Medical Education Bill at parliament.
The draft of the bill submitted to the parliamentary committee was changed against the spirit of the Mathema Report in the involvement of law makers from CPN-UML.
PM Deuba was affirmative to bring the Act as demanded by Dr. KC and said the Act should incorporate the recommendations of Mathema Report.