Explained: what is ‘Charak Shapath’ and why it has caused a stir in Tamil Nadu
Chennai, May 02: The Dean of the government medical college in Madurai Tamil Nadu has been transferred and put on a compulsory wait following the controversial oath taken by the first year students.
The health department said that during the induction ceremony the students took the English translation of the Sanskrit oath, 'Charak Shapath.'
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Narayan Thirupathy claimed that the decision to remove the dean was a political move.
"Hippocratic oath is a westernised way of taking the pledge. NMC recommended the old Indian way of medicine (Maharshi Charak Shapath). Unnecessary politics should be avoided," Thirumurthy told news agency ANI.
The Centre said it is optional. Why should you suspend the Dean. The DMK has always loved the westernised model, he added.
The health authorities said that the Dean , A Rathinavel should have been careful considering it is such a sensitive matter. His claim that medicos chose to do this on their own is unacceptable. Even the medical commission says medicos will not be forced to take oath in Sanskrit, the officials also said.
At the Madurai Government Medical College, instead of the Hippocratic Oath, the Maharshi Charak Shapath was administered on Saturday to the newly admitted students and this is 'strongly condemnable', an official release here said.
Hence, the Madurai college dean Dr A Rathinavel was relieved of his post and is placed on waiting list, the government said.
Also, a departmental inquiry has been ordered for violation of rule and unilaterally making students to take the Charaka oath. The action has been ordered by Health Minister Ma Subramanian.
The government said it would advise heads of all state-run medical colleges through a circular to always follow the Hippocratic oath without fail.
The National Medical Commission had recently recommended that the Maharshi Charak Shapath should replace the Hippocratic oath.
According to new guidelines, "Modified Maharshi Charak Shapath is recommended when a candidate is introduced to medical education."
Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya had said in Parliament that 'Maharshi Charak Shapath' would be optional and not forced on medical students. Charaka Shapath or Charaka oath, is a passage from the 'Charaka Samhita.' It is a guideline, like dos and don'ts, by a teacher to fresh medical students.
The Samhita is a Sanskrit text on Ayurveda, the ancient Indian system of medicine. The Hippocratic Oath is an ethical code attributed to the ancient Greek physician Hippocrates and it is widely used.
(With PTI inputs)