Tamil Nadu

Medical oath row in T.N.: DME claims Deans already told to follow routine admission process

R. Narayana Babu, left, Director of Medical Education, holding an enquiry with A. Rathinavel, former Dean, Madurai Medical College, and students at the college premises on Tuesday.

R. Narayana Babu, left, Director of Medical Education, holding an enquiry with A. Rathinavel, former Dean, Madurai Medical College, and students at the college premises on Tuesday. | Photo Credit: R. Ashok

The Director of Medical Education (DME), R. Narayana Babu, claimed that Madurai Medical College, where Charak Shapath was administered to freshers, had violated two instructions — one from the Health Department and another from the DME — to get clarification on any new/fake circulars from the department and to follow "routine" process of admission issued in Febraury.

Dr. Narayana Babu, who held an enquiry into the April 30 incident, here on Tuesday, told reporters that he would send the report to the State government for further action.

The DME said the students' council had admitted that it was their decision to go with Charak Shapath, instead of Hippocratic Oath, that had been traditionally taken in all medical colleges over decades.

A. Rathinavel, who was put on compulsory wait list from the post of Dean of Madurai Medical College following the incident, clarified that he was not aware of the change in the oath.

"The recommendation of using Charak Shapath made by National Medical Commission was only a circular and not an order," Dr. Narayana Babu said.

The Health Secretary had issued an instruction, dated February 10, to all Deans asking them to get clarification on all new circulars with the department. "Since some fake orders in the name of NMC also could get circulated through social media, this instruction was issued," he said.

Besides, the DME had issued an order on February 11 instructing the Deans to follow " routine" process of admission.

When asked why no specific clarification from the Health Department/DME was issued with respect to Charak Shapath, he said the NMC would address its circular only to the Deans and not to the Health Secretary and DME. The two orders issued held good for Charak Shapath issue also, he said. He also pointed out that Parliament had clarified that Charak Shapath could not replace Hippocratic Oath.

While Medical Colleges in North India had introduced the White Coat Ceremony only this year, Tamil Nadu Colleges were following it for the last eight to 10 years. "All the colleges have been taking only the Hippocratic Oath for decades," he said, adding that Madurai Medical College failed to seek clarification on this issue.

To a question as to why no action was initiated against the Deans of other medical colleges that had also used only Charak Shapath for the White Coat ceremony, the DME said that it would be verified and appropriate action would be taken.


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Printable version | Jun 17, 2022 8:24:08 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/medical-oath-row-in-tn-dme-claims-deans-already-told-to-follow-routine-admission-process/article65378160.ece