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Junior doctors of Bihar call off strike, to wait for HC order

The medicos, who struck work on Monday, are demanding that graduates from AIIMS-Patna be excluded from the 50% state quota for admission to postgraduate (PG) courses in the state.

patna Updated: Apr 11, 2019 09:01 IST
Ruchir Kumar
Ruchir Kumar
Hindustan Times, Patna
junior doctor strike,bihar doctors strike,NEET
Junior doctors are demonstrating during their strike from three days in support of their demands at the campus of Indira Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences (IGIMS) in Patna. Bihar India on Wednesday April 10,2019.(Photo by Santosh Kumar/Hindustan Times)

Junior doctors called off their indefinite strike Wednesday evening after the state government made them see reason into the fact that the issue they were agitating for was pending before the Patna high court, and it would comply with the court’s direction.

The medicos, who struck work on Monday, are demanding that graduates from AIIMS-Patna be excluded from the 50% state quota for admission to postgraduate (PG) courses in the state. Their contention was that graduates from AIIMS-Patna get four-fold benefit, including admission under 50% ‘internal quota’, the all-India quota at AIIMS, as well as the all-India quota under the National Eligibility Entrance Test (NEET) pool.

Representatives of the junior doctors’ association (JDA) met Bihar’s principal secretary, health, Sanjay Kumar, before announcing their decision to call off their strike.

“The principal secretary has assured us that the government will reiterate its earlier position in the high court, by arguing in favour of not allowing graduates of AIIMS-Patna to take admission in PG courses under the state quota,” said Dr Shankar Bharti and Dr Vikash Kumar, JDA presidents of the Patna Medical College Hospital and the Indira Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences (IGIMS), respectively.

The high court had last year granted relief to graduates from AIIMS-Patna who applied for PG courses under the state quota. It had also asked the state government to clarify its eligibility criteria, mentioned against clause 6.1 in the prospectus for PG courses, which says that medical colleges in Bihar were entitled for seats under “state quota”.

MBBS graduates from Bihar, including Dr Aishwarya Singh, Dr Chandan Pathak, Dr Sanjit Mishra, Dr Vijaylakshmi Pandey and Dr Sachin Sinha had on April 4, this year, filed a writ, demanding that graduates of AIIMS-Patna not be allowed the benefit of state quota for admissions in PG courses in Bihar. The matter, which came up for hearing on Wednesday, has now been listed for April 22 after counsels for the state government and the Bihar Combined Entrance Competitive Examination Board (BCECEB) sought some time.

Principal secretary, health, Sanjay Kumar expressed his happiness that the junior doctors had resumed work.

“In anticipation of high court order, we have requested the BCECEB to defer the second counselling for admission to PG courses in Bihar under the state quota from April 12 to either April 23 or 24,” said Kumar.

Of the 426 PG medical seats in Bihar, 94 went vacant last year of which 76 vacancies were in three private medical colleges of Bihar.

First Published: Apr 11, 2019 09:01 IST