CHENNAI: Expressing apprehension over the adverse impact of the proposed National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill on medical education and the profession, political parties in the State have urged the Centre to withdraw the legislation.
Slamming the Centre for bringing in the Bill, which the parties said tends to deprive the rights of State governments, DMK working president M K Stalin said the proposed provisions seem to be defeating the basic purpose of federalism.
“The provision that the Centre alone can nominate members of the NMC and the states should abide by its orders defeat the very purpose of the principle of federalism,” he said in a statement on Tuesday.
“I urge the Centre to immediately withdraw the Bill as states will not have any representation in the proposed NMC,” he added.
Adding that the provision to allow non-allopathic doctors to practice allopathy after undergoing a six-month training would lead to mushrooming of quacks, Tamil Nadu Congress Committee (TNCC) president S Thirunavukkarasar wanted the Centre to withdraw the Bill. He alleged that if private institutions are allowed to fill 60 per cent of seats, it will lead to commercialisation of medical education and proliferation of ineligible practitioners.
CPM State secretary G Ramakrishnan alleged that the Centre was trying to bring medical education under the clutches of Sangh Parivar by proposing to nominate members to the commission outside the profession.He said rhe Bill that deprived the rights of the states, negating reservation and privatising medical education and service, should be withdrawn.
CPI State secretary R Mutharasan also demanded that the Centre should recall the NMC Bill that went against the rights of the states, secularism, modern scientific medical education and the principle of federalism.
Strike called off after bill goes to standing panel
Doctors who went on a strike against the National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill on Tuesday withdrew their protest after the government referred it to a parliamentary standing committee. The out-patient department activities were suspended in the morning, but resumed by noon. “We withdrew the strike as we have a temporary solution.
The government has shown positive response to our strike,” said K A Jayalal, president of TN chapter of Indian Medical Association (IMA). Doctors from the IMA went on a 12-hour strike on Tuesday, protesting against the Bill that seeks to replace the Medical Council of India. The IMA, which has been strongly opposing the Bill, believes that the move would cripple their functioning and take away the right of doctors to elect their council democratically.
Passing the Bill would allow practitioners of alternative medicine such as homeopathy, ayurveda and siddha to practice allopathy after finishing a one-year “bridge course”. Allopathy doctors from Tamil Nadu and across the country contested the idea saying it would not only increase more underqualified doctors, but also promote quackery.
The Bill would lead to further commodification of medical seats, said R K Vinoth from Madras Medical College. Students of Madras Medical College protested against the legislation. However, the doctors’ protest was withdrawn before it could create a serious impact on the fuctioning of hospitals. The parliamentary standing committee has been told to submit a report before the next budget session, which is said to begin by this month-end.