To end the ongoing crisis at NEIGRIHMS in Shillong, the Khasi Students’ Union (KSU) has urged the union health minister to replace the institute’s director, Dr D.M. Thappa, with immediate effect.
The KSU recently dashed off a letter to union health & family welfare minister Dr Harsh Vardhan seeking his intervention into the ongoing crisis in the premier medical institute in Meghalaya.
The letter has been issued by Lambok S. Marngar, president and Donald V. Thabah, general secretary of the KSU.
Crisis continues to hit North Eastern Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health and Medical Sciences (NEIGRIHMS) as the tussle between the director of the institute, Dr D.M. Thappa and the head of the Cardiology department, , Dr. Animesh Mishra, is yet to die down.
In a letter dashed off recently to Vardhan, the KSU stated: “Ever since Dr. D. M. Thappa took over as the Director of the premier North Eastern Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health & Medical Sciences (NEIGRIHMS), a plethora of unrest befall on this reputed institution which caters to the medical requirements of the people of Meghalaya and North East India.”
“The Union in this regard requests for the immediate replacement of the incumbent director,” the apex Khasi students’ body stated in its letter.
The Department of Neurology has been merged with the Department of Medicine, Departments of Neurosurgery, Urology and Surgical Oncology has been merged with General Surgery, the KSU stated.
Expressing unhappiness at the merger, the students’ body said: “Such merger of Super Speciality departments with Speciality departments is uncalled for and the KSU demands for the reconstitution of the mentioned Super Speciality departments as separate entities.”
The recent de-recognition of the postgraduate (PG) courses on General Surgery and Anaesthesiology by the Medical Council of India (MCI) has left many students pursuing these courses “stranded as they cannot avail placement in any of the government-run medical institutes in the country”, the KSU stated.
The union requested the union minister to address the issue and ensure that the PG courses of NEIGRIHMS are recognise by the MCI.
“Last year in 2018, the advertisements and interviews for faculty posts were called and held, but in a few departments result could not declared as there are major technical lapses in the Recruitment Rules at the time of advertisement. This has badly affects the internal candidates and also the new faculty members could not join the institute. Furthermore the anomaly has led to a huge wastage of public money,” it said.
The students’ body also alleged that the local resident doctors, pursuing studies in NEIGRIHMS are “harassed”.
Their “extension of services” is not granted, quarters are denied and “unacceptable integrity certificates were issued”, the KSU alleged.
Due to the serious complications while working in NEIGRIHMS, many doctors have resigned which has affected the institution as these doctors are from the Super Speciality departments such as CTVS, Neurosurgery and Medical Oncology, it added.
Saying that the internal conflict between the director and the Cardiology department head Dr. Animesh Mishra has led to a standstill in the functioning of the Cardiology department, it stated: “This stalemate has caused extreme inconvenience to the patients and their relatives putting the lives of the patients at risk.”
The students’ body also mentioned that due to the ongoing conflict between Dr Thappa and Dr Mishra, two persons had to lose their lives in the hospital.
The KSU also demanded a high-level inquiry into the tragedy and take proper steps against the guilty.
The union also demanded compensations for the families of the two victims.