Stir by medicos in 10 medical colleges in TN called off

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Chennai, Dec 4 (UNI) Medicos in ten of the 14 medical colleges in Tamil Nadu have called off their nearly three-week long stir against the Centre's proposed move to make one-year rural posting compulsory.

A spokesperson of the Tamil Nadu Medical Students and House Surgeon's Council told UNI here today that this followed an appeal made by Chief Minister M Karunanidhi urging them to call off the stir in the interests of their education and the sentiments of their parents.

''We consider the appeal made by the Chief Minister as an assurance that the MBBS course duration will not be extended by one year to six and half years and are returning to classes from today,'' he added.

After prolonged deliberations, the medicos of Government Medical colleges of Thanjavur, Madurai, Salem, Tiruchirapalli, Theni, Kanniyakumari, Vellore and Madras Medical college called off their strike early today, while the students of Chengalpattu and Tuticorin Medical colleges withdrew their agitation this morning and returned to classes.

He said their counterparts in the remaining four colleges in the State -- Kilpauk and Stanley Medical Colleges in Chennai, Tirunelveli Medical College and IRT Perunthurai -- were expected to call off the stir later today.

However, tight security arrangements were made around the medical colleges.

'We have only temporarily withdrawn the stir respecting the sentiments expressed by the Chief Minister and Health Minister M R K Panneerselvam, though Union Health Minister Dr Anbumani Ramadoss' observation that a final decision on the issue will be taken after receipt of the Dr Sambasiva Rao Committee report is unacceptable to us,'' he added.

Thanking all the political parties for their support, the Council warned that if the Centre tried to implement this in future, the medicos would launch a nation-wide agitation.

Despite the State Government asking the medicos to return to classes or else the colleges and hostels would be closed, they had intensified their stir yesterday by launching an indefinite fast.

Mr Karunanidhi reiterated his appeal and clarified that the government had not served any ultimatum to the medicos by saying ''the agitation was unwarranted as nothing had been implemented so far.'' ''The one-year rural posting is only in the proposal stage and no amendments had been brought to the Act in Parliament,'' Mr Karunanidhi said.

UNI

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