Taking Health Minister Dr A Ramadoss head on, resident doctors of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) reprinted and distributed degree certificates on Thursday without his signatures.
The medicos called off their strike and returned to work after deciding there was no need for Dr Ramadoss’ signature on their degree certificates. The decision was taken after the AIIMS Staff Council combed the Institute Act and consulted lawyers.
“We were told that Institute President’s signature was not mandatory. A resolution was passed in the Staff Council in which it was decided
that the dean and the director can sign on the degree and it has been legally verified,” said Dr AnilSharma, RDA, AIIMS. Forty-nine degree certificates of students, who had to apply in institutions aboard to study further, were printed and distributed.
“Rest of the students will get the certificates at the convocation ceremony,” said Dr Kumar Harsh, President, Resident Doctors’ Association. The convocation will be held on September 25 and the medicos maintained they would boycott the ceremony if Dr Ramadoss handed the certificates.
Earlier in the day, the Delhi High Court had asked AIIMS and the Health Ministry to resolve the crisis and Dr Ramadoss had warned the agitating doctors that they would face suspension if they did not call off the strike.
The minister also added the certificates would not be valid without his signatures. “According to the law, his signature is not needed,” said Dr Harsh, in reply to the minister’s claim.
Resident doctors at AIIMS had gone on an indefinite strike late Tuesday night, asking Dr Ramadoss to sign 49 degree certificates immediately, as these students had to apply in institutions abroad.
Since 2005, 695 MBBS, MD, McH and MS students have graduated but have not been given their degrees.