Home Minister warns vandals to stay off TUTH row

KATHMANDU: Home Minister Bhim Rawal today said his ministry would only intervene if there were vandalism on the hospital premises. However, as long as the concerned institution indulges in dialogue to sort out their woes, the ministry will not intervene.

Speaking at an interaction programme with mediapersons at Singha Durbar, Rawal said this referring to the ongoing protest at Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital. He added that he was concerned about the closure of the hospital and had written a letter to the vice-chancellor of the university. “We are trying to solve the problem under the Essential Service Act,” said the minister, adding that Ministry of Education is also holding talks with the agitators.

Meanwhile, locals residing nearby today padlocked all entry gates of TUTH demanding resumption of all the services at the hospital. Bishal Shrestha, a local and a member of local club said they would submit a memorandum to the prime minister. He added that they were going to shut all the shops and organise a rally in protest.

Locals had padlocked the gates at the time when the agitating doctors were holding their informal meeting. Locals said they would not let anybody out of the hospital premises unless they reach an agreement to resume services. The locals had also gathered at the TUTH entrance and chanted slogans. Shrestha also urged the government to be serious towards forming a high level probe committee to look into the issue.

Likewise, Dr Deebya Raj Mishra, spokesperson of the joint struggle committee said that they will stick to their protest programme and will not withdraw their non-cooperation protest programme. Mishra claimed that they had convinced the locals and are going to the Prime Minister’s office to submit a memorandum to the PM. He added that locals also supported their demand of ending corruption and political appointment at TUTH.

At the same time, Nepal Medical Association has expressed their strong dissatisfaction toward the decision of government and termed it as a ‘discriminatory’ decision. A press statement issued by NMA mentioned that they are time and again appealing for forming a high level investigation committee including all the stakeholders.