Clause-wise discussion to begin today

Kathmandu, November 24

Four months after the government signed a nine-point agreement with senior orthopaedic Surgeon Dr Govinda KC, a parliamentary committee is finally set to start clause-wise discussion on the National Medical Education Bill from tomorrow.

The government had agreed to amend the bill as per Dr KC’s demands following which Dr KC ended his 15th hunger strike on July 26.

The sub-committee of Education and Health Committee led by lawmaker Bhairav Bahadur Singh will hold clause-wise discussion on the bill.

The sub-committee has said that it will table the bill with its recommendations in the first meeting of winter session of the Parliament.

Dr KC, who has been demanding reforms in the medical education sector, has threatened to launch 16th hunger strike if the bill is not enacted into law as per the nine-point agreement.

The government had accepted  Dr KC’s  demand to put a  moratorium of 10 years  on opening of  new medical colleges in Kathmandu valley and bar universities from granting affiliation to more than  five medical colleges. The government has also agreed to ensure that   medical colleges operate their hospitals for at least three years before running classes.

Sub-committee Coordinator Singh told The Himalayan Times that his sub-panel would also consult with stakeholders before making final recommendations on the bill. “The sub-panel will also invite the prime minister and Minister of Education and Science Technology in the course of clause-wise discussion on the bill,” Singh said.

Ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) lawmakers led by Krishna Bhakta Pokharel and Nepali Congress lawmakers led by Gagan Thapa had proposed amendments to the bill. Singh said the sub-committee would discuss each clause of the bill.

One of the lawmakers of the sub-committee Gagan Kumar Thapa said clause-wise discussion would not take a long time if NCP lawmakers followed the amendment proposals registered by  lawmakers on the basis of the nine-point agreement.