Owners of medical colleges are pressing the Tribhuvan University and the Nepal Medical Council to find a way to increase students’ quotas in post-graduate courses to accommodate both the applicants on the merit list and those ready to pay hefty fees.
College promoters have started using their political clout after they admitted students charging exorbitantly high while the Supreme Court asked the schools to enrol students passing the Institute of Medicine (IoM)’s test.
Khuma Aryal, managing director of the Bhairahawa-based Universal Medical College that has denied admission to students on the merit list, is using his connections in the Nepali Congress to influence a decision at the TU, a highly placed source at the university said.
Aryal is an NC cadre believed to be close to Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba. He is also a close friend of, and de facto adviser to, Education Minister Gopal Man Shrestha.
Sources said Aryal and his team are especially hopeful that the TU will press the IoM to backtrack on its stance on merit. TU Vice-chancellor Tirtha Raj Khaniya was appointed on the NC’s quota.
However, the TU has taken no decision since the Supreme Court’s order on Wednesday for medical colleges to enrol postgraduate students on merit basis. A single bench of Acting Chief Justice Gopal Prasad Parajuli had also ordered the colleges to follow the fees ceiling set by the TU.
TU Registrar Dilli Upreti declined to comment reasoning that the matter is sub judice in court.
Despite the court’s order, the Universal and theNational Medical College, Birgunj have refused to admit students on the merit list who have frequently visited the colleges since last week.
Managing Director of National College Basruddin Ansari is using his influence with the CPN-UML to press the VC and the registrar at the TU. MD Ansari was tipped to be the UML’s mayoral candidate for the second-phase local elections in the Birgunj Metropolitan City. However, the elections in Province 2 have been deferred till September 18.
“Students admitted to our college have filed a case in the Supreme Court arguing that implementation of the merit system has put their money and future at stake. I won’t comment further on matters that are sub judice in court,” said Aryal.
Following pressure from college owners, TU officials had asked the IoM if they can find an amicable solution so that those admitted can also continue their education while the meritorious students are taken on board.
A source at the IoM closely following the events said Dr Jagdish Agrawal, the IoM dean, is firm that the medical colleges should compulsorily admit the recommended candidates.
Dr Agrawal has already warned the medical colleges that students enrolled from outside the merit list would not be recognised. The NMC that certifies doctors has also said the post-graduate candidates not on the list would not be recognised.
Medical students and activists hit the streets on Sunday demanding that private medical colleges compulsorily enrol those on the merit list.
Source: The Kathmandu Post