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Indo-Fijian behind new medical school

Umanand Prasad is the benefactor of a proposed medical school in the University of Fiji.

india Updated: Mar 07, 2006 11:16 IST

An Indo-Fijian doctor, who now lives in Australia, is the inspiration and benefactor behind a proposed medical school in the University of Fiji.

Announcing this while addressing the university's dedication ceremony at its Saweni Campus, university vice-chancellor Rajesh Chandra said the school's mastermind is Umanand Prasad, who is originally of Labasa, Fiji.

Prasad, who is now settled in Adelaide, Australia, has set aside $1 million for the medical school, according to the Fiji Times newspaper. He is also a vice-president of the International Congress for Fiji Indians (ICFI), an organisation that was formed after the 1987 coup in that country.

The medical school would be called Dr Umanand Prasad School of Medicine, the report said.

"I have taken upon me the task of planning, construction and establishment of this section of the University of Fiji," he told the paper.

"At the moment I have made arrangements to set aside $1 million towards this."

"It is a beginning and I am sure many of you will come forward and give me a hand in the establishment of this school," he said.

Prasad said he had been coming to Fiji for the last four years holding medical camps in various parts of the country.

"This service to the people of Fiji has made me realize the need for medical expertise here," he said.

"The medical school will endeavour to fulfil this need," the report quoted him as saying.

Indo-Fijians constitute around 43 percent of Fiji's total population of over 890,000.

First Published: Mar 07, 2006 11:16 IST