Dr KC breaks his fast, drinks juice offered by labourer

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KATHMANDU, APR 02 – Agitating Dr Govinda KC broke his fast on the 12th day of his indefinite hunger strike on Thursday following the government assurance to address all of his demands.

He drank a glass of juice served by a labourer Satya Narayan Ram and a 10-year-old patient Subad Adhikari at Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital (TUTH) in Maharajgunj, Kathmandu at 4 pm today. Ram, who hails from Saptari, makes his living by mending shoes outside TUTH gate.

The government talks team read out the draft of the agreement before the fasting doctor.Earlier in the day, KC agreed to break his fast after the authorities agreed to address all of his demands.

The agreement was signed by Dr KC, Chief Secretary Leela Mani Paudel, National Planning Commission Vice Chairman Govinda Pokharel and Nepal Medical Association Chairman Dr Anjani Kumar Jha.

In the agreement, the government has agreed to form a commission in the next seven days under a former Appellate Court chief judge. The commission will make recommendations for taking action against education minister and officials for their alleged involvement in granting medical affiliations from Kathmandu University.

Dr KC had been staging fast-unto-death since March 22 for the fifth time against the aberrations and anomalies surrounding the country’s medical education.

His demands included resignation or dismissal from the post of Education Minister Chitra Lekha Yadav and other officials of Tribhuvan University and Nepal Medical Council.

The government has also agreed to assess the capacity of medical colleges and de-affiliate colleges that are found below the standard.

Likewise, affiliations to new medical colleges will be withhold until a medical education policy is formulated in the country.

The deal also includes making MD/MS/DM/MCH courses free in government universities from the next fiscal year and establishing at least one medical college in every development regions within the next five years.

Meanwhile, the Nepal Medical Association (NMA), the umbrella organisation of medical doctors, has withdrawn its decision to shut all the Out Patient Department (OPD) services across the nation.

NMA had shut the OPD services across the nation in support Dr KC’s demands and condemning government’s apathy towards him.

Thousands of patients across the country were hit hard due to the shut down in services.