Mathema report implementation in progress: MoE

Kathmandu, August 31

The Ministry of Education (MoE) today said that a majority of the recommendations made by the high-level taskforce led by Kedar Bhakta Mathema, former Vice Chancellor of Tribhuvan University, is already in the process of implementation.

At a time when a senior orthopedic doctor at the Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital Dr Govinda KC is staging indefinite hunger strike for sixth time, MoE Spokesperson Dr Hari Lamsal, said 73 points of the 83-point recommendation are already in the process of implementation.

He said the sub-committee formed under the coordination of Dr Yagya Bahadur Karki, a member of the National Planning Commission, had enumerated the recommendations of the report into 85 points. “We have already forwarded the recommendation to the concerned authorities for implementation,” he added. He informed that there were legal and policy-level hurdles in the implementation of the remaining 12-points and hence cannot be implemented immediately. “The allegation that MoE is not doing anything regarding implementation of the report is false,” he said, adding, “The government has been doing its work and we are hopeful that we will find ways to solve the existing differences.”

However, Dr KC has demanded word by word implementation of the report.

Dr Bhagawan Koirala, a member of high-level taskforce said they had recommended to the government to decentralize medical education for all-round development of the medical sector. “We have set the ceiling on fee structure to make medical studies more transparent. I don’t think that investment in private medical colleges will go down the drain if we set a ceiling on fee structure.”

“Fee ceiling and seat allocation might create problem for those institutions that aim to develop physical infrastructures from fees collected from students but it will benefit people who made investments in medical colleges with a long-term vision.” He further said that medical seats have been reduced from 150 to 100 to produce quality doctors. He also demanded full implementation of the report. Expressing solidarity with Dr KC, Dr Anjani Kumar Jha, president of Nepal Medical Association, also demanded implementation of the report. He said the government should form a talks team to hold dialogues with Dr KC and the proprietors of private medical colleges.

Meanwhile, the proprietors of private medical colleges said the government should consider revising the ceiling set on fees and seat allocation. Dr SK Kanaidiya, chairperson of Nepalgunj Medical College, said it would be difficult for them to run medical colleges if the government implements the report word by word. “The private sector has 80 per cent stake in the health sector but if the government fully implements the Mathema report, it would risk closure of private medical institutions.”

Govt requests Dr KC to end strike

KATHMANDU: The government today requested Dr Govinda KC, who is on a fast-unto-death, to end his strike stating that the government has already begun implementing most of his concerns and is determined to implement others. A cabinet meeting held this evening in Singhdurbar decided that the social committee of the cabinet to be held tomorrow would clearly state what specific demands can be implemented and what cannot be as per the law of the land and the government’s policy, said Minister for Information and Communication Minendra Rijal. “Since the government has already begun to implement most of his concerns and has expressed commitment on other concerns, the government requests him to end his strike at the earliest,” Rijal said.