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Medicos reject govt offer, refuse to give in

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, May 18 (UNI) Striking medicos across the country today decided to continue their stir against OBC reservations even as the government assured them that general category seats in institutes of higher education will not be reduced.

Striking medicos met Defence Minister Pranab Mukherjee and Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss as well as senior BJP leader L K Advani.

In a bid to garner support from the Opposition, the protestors submitted a memorandum to Mr Advani, demanding a roll-back of the government' s proposal.

The executive of the doctors unanimously decided to continue and intensify the agitation after meeting the ministerial team constituted by the Centre.

''We have decided to continue with the strike. We were not satisfied with the suggestions the Ministers came up with. There is no question of backing out now,'' Youth for Equality leader Dr Neha Gami said.

''Nothing will deter us.... Notices, police action or termination orders nothing at all,'' she added.

In yet another development, Congress Spokesman Rajeev Shukla told reporters here that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will start the process of consultations with political parties from Monday.

The Group of Ministers, constituted for the purpose, will also solicit the view of political parties to work out a formula, he informed. Asked whether an ordinance would be issued or a fresh Bill passed, he said it would be decided after the GoM came out with its report.

Meanwhile, medical services in a majority of government and private medical colleges across the country remained affected, following the strike by resident doctors, interns and medical students in protest against the proposed reservation policy of the central government.

'Youth for Equality, which is spearheading the anti-quota agitation organised a march which began at Red Fort and moved to Raj Ghat in the national capital.

Over 100 students have been on an indefinite hunger strike at AIIMS on May 13 opposing the government proposal. Almost 60 fasting students have been admitted to AIIMS casualty due as they were developing electrolyte imbalances.

Patients faced hardships in north-west region of India as protestors in large numbers blocked the main Chandigarh-Delhi road and the Chandigarh-Samrala road.

The stir spread to the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir as medical students and junior doctors held a protest march to express solidarity with their fellow colleagues across the country.

Health services in Madhya Pradesh also remained affected as all the five state medical colleges were on strike. The protesting medicos will organise a statewide rally in the state capital on May 20.

Patients continued to suffer in West Bengal as medicos in the state continued to cease work in six medical colleges in the state.

Students and junior doctors of the city's Calcutta Medical College and Hospital participated in a relay hunger strike while a central procession of the agitators was taken out under the banner of Youth for Equality.

The nationwide anti-reservation stir hit Nashik in Maharashtra today when more than 200 medical and dental students of four colleges in the city launched an ''indefinite dharna'' in front of the Collector's office here this morning.

The Backward Classes associations however, have threatened to launch a counter agitation if the doctors and other professionals across the country continued to engage in anti-quota stir.

UNI Team PR AT BD2012

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