Agitating doctors to meet Minister of State for Education

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Mumbai, Apr 19 (UNI) Representatives of over 5,000 resident doctors and interns at government hospitals across Maharashtra, who are on strike for the last five days, will meet Minister of State for Education Vasant Purkhe regarding their demands in Pune today.

Dr Gunjan Sharma, spokesperson of the agitating doctors, said, ''Representatives of the Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD) will meet the Minister of State for Education and apprise him of the situation and the reason behind the strike.'' The resident doctors are on strike to protest against the state government's decision to reduce the number of seats in post-graduate (PG) courses from 650 in 2007 to 411 in 2008, following the de-recognition of some of the courses by the Medical Council of India (MCI).

Courses like psychiatry and skin department were de-recognised, against which the doctors approached the High Court and demanded a compensation of Rs 50 lakh. The Maharashtra Government instead of appealing against the MCI's decision cancelled the courses and the seats were reduced due to lack of faculty.

Dr Sharma added that the doctors are still on strike and will appeal to the Minister of State for Education against the termination of the services of 92 doctors at Indira Gandhi Government Medical College in Nagpur.

''Our representatives will also appeal to the Minister to increase the number of PG seats to 650 from the present 411 and recognise the courses that were de-recognised by the MCI,'' Dr Sharma said.

The de-recognised courses can be practiced only in Maharashtra, hence the medical students want the state government to appeal to the MCI for recognition of courses.

Meanwhile, the strike has paralysed medical services in the state and many of the patients are being sent back due to non-availability of treatment. Many hospitals have postponed planned surgeries are undertaking only emergency cases.


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