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Medicos turn down PM's appeal, to continue stir
May 21, 2006 17:06 IST
Turning down Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's appeal, the striking medicos today continued their agitation saying it carried no meaning as it did not address their demands.
"The appeal carried no meaning as it does not address our demands," Dr Kumar Harsh, spokesman of the 'Youth for Equality' group, which is spearheading the agitation against OBC quotas in educational institutions, told PTI in New Delhi.
He said the striking medicos had made three demands -- rollback of proposed OBC quotas, review of the existing reservation policy by a non-political committee and a concrete statement by the Prime Minister on the issue.
"None of these demands were looked into (by the Prime Minister's appeal)," he said.
Meanwhile, the condition of medicos on hunger strike deteriorated as their stir entered the eighth day.
"Twenty students, on hunger strike since Sunday last, will be replaced by others following deterioration in their condition," said Dr Sasmit Sarangi, a representative of the 'Youth for Equality.'
AIIMS Resident Doctors Association President Vinod Patra told PTI that doctors had received notices to vacate hostels by Monday. "We have decided to ignore notices from the AIIMS administration," he said.
The strikers said they were ready to be flexible on their demands but were unhappy with the stand taken by government.
"In the last three meetings, the government has just talked about increasing the number of seats," a medico said. Moreover, the government was maintaining complete silence on the demand for an expert committee to review the existing reservation policy, he said.
In his first direct intervention in the on-going protest against reservation for OBCs, the Prime Minister last night appealed to medicos to call off their agitation assuring them of an amicable settlement and to have faith in government.
His appeal came on a day of hectic developments on the reservation front when the Group of Ministers, constituted by him, submitted its report to him.