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Medicos, techies to mobilize masses

MEDICOS OF the GSVM Medical College have decided to keep away from the hunger strike and lend moral support to their counterparts in the IIT-K. The medicos, along with the techies, will mobilise the people in favour of their protest and for this, from Monday they will start pasting anti-reservation stickers on motor-bikes and cars, distribute pamphlets and give post cards to the general public in the city, to be sent to the PMO.

india Updated: May 29, 2006 01:09 IST

MEDICOS OF the GSVM Medical College have decided to keep away from the hunger strike and lend moral support to their counterparts in the IIT-K. The medicos, along with the techies, will mobilise the people in favour of their protest and for this, from Monday they will start pasting anti-reservation stickers on motor-bikes and cars, distribute pamphlets and give post cards to the general public in the city, to be sent to the PMO.

Due to threats to academic career, a striking medico seeking anonymity said, “Till 4 pm on Sunday we didn’t know that IITians were going on relay hunger strike.” The same medico also said, “In the fight against reservation we are united against the government’s quota politics but instead of sitting on hunger strike we will lend moral support to IIT-K students in their hunger strike and mobilise support for our cause by interacting with and persuading the general public.”

It may be noted that the striking medicos are also members of the Forum of Students against Reservation (FIR), but due to lack of coordination, they were not informed about the hunger strike by students of IIT-K.

Meanwhile, medicos and IITians are going to hold a late night meeting on Sunday to bring about concensus in their joint fight against reservation.
Seeing resentment among the general public against the government’s quota politics, the IITians have begun their indefinite relay hunger strike from today onwards. Ten students of IIT-K sat on relay hunger strike on the IIT-K premises from 4 pm today.

On day one, those who sat on hunger strike included Anant Gautam, Nootan Gautam, Shailendra Pathak, Vijendra Pandey, Brijendra Pandey, Shashank Malhotra and Rahul Gupta besides three others.

Some IITians back from Delhi told Hindustan Times, “As some of us were in Delhi and some were in Kanpur, due to lack of coordination the strike was called from Sunday instead of Monday.”

Some senior students of IIT-K have also decided to reduce the number of students sitting on indefinite hunger strike from ten to four or five students.Citing the reason, an IITian said, “We don’t want to engage most of the students in hunger strike and unnecessary waste their energy.”

However, the IIT-K students have chalked out a strategy to mobilise the maximum support and the huge crowd at the march in New Delhi has infused fresh enthusiasm in them.

According to IIT-K students, they had to declare hunger strike a day ahead because they had interacted with students of other premier institutes in New Delhi and it was felt that sitting on hunger strike would bolster their anti-quota protest.

Around 9 pm on Saturday, when the IIT-K students were pasting posters declaring their proposed hunger strike from May 29, they were called up by their counterparts who attended the anti-reservation procession in New Delhi and finally a decision was taken to go on hunger strike from Sunday evening itself.

Meanwhile, the striking medicos have ruled out from any possibility of rift in the college on caste lines. A medico who had attended the rally in New Delhi on Saturday told HT, “We oppose any kind of division on caste basis in the college and we will collectively go to the markets and schools to get the views of public about reservation on postcards and send them to the PMO.”

The medicos have ordered a 50-metre long plain banner on which they will get the signatures of the general public and that banner like post card will also be sent to the PMO.

First Published: May 29, 2006 01:09 IST