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NEW DELHI, Nov 18: In a significant ruling, Delhi High Court today directed the Central and State Governments to consider making legislation for granting of licences to existing and new institutes conducting courses in electropathy and other alternative systems of medicine.
In a 42-page judgement, a Division Bench comprising acting Chief Justice Y K Sabharwal and Justice K S Gupta directed the Governments to also lay the minimum standards of education and maintain a check on the functioning of such institutes on the lines set out in sections 17, 18, 19 and 19 a of the Medical Council Act, 1956.
The Governments were further directed to prescribe minimum qualifications for getting admission in such institutions and conditions entitling these institutes to issue diplomas and certificates.
The legislation would also decide on the right to use the prefix ‘doctor’ and to issue medical certificates to the patients by diploma/certificate holders from such institutes, the judgement said adding that the institutes teaching electropathy or any other alternative system of medicine would, however, not award any degree for the course conducted by them.
The court extended by six months from today the operation of the January 30, 1997 order and its modification of March 12, 1997 which restrained the institutes from issuing degree, diploma or certificate of any course conducted by any of the colleges or institutions affiliated to them in electropathy.
The court directed the institutes which had made misleading statements and claims about their recognition by the Medical Council of India to delete all such claims and would restrain themselves from doing so in future.
"In public interest, functioning of such institutes deserves to be checked and regulated by making legislation by the central and State Governments," the judges observed.
The Governments were directed to provide adequate publicity through the media informing general public about the recognition status of all such institutions under the Medical Council Act.
The judges extended their January last year order by six months to enable the Central and State Governments to consider the desirability of bringing suitable legislation in the matter.
About awarding diplomas and certificates by these institutions, affiliated under the naturo-electro homeopathy medicos of India, they said though the institutes had no right to award degree to the students, as the law stands there seems to be no legal prohibition in granting diplomas and certificates for the courses conducted by such institutes.
This is also because "our country has a large number of unemployed youths and it is not difficult to lure them by the institutes like those named in the petition as the issue of certificates and diplomas for practicing the systems other than the recognised one is almost guaranteed by them," the judges observed. Expressing a strong need of imposing a check on the functioning of such institutes, the court said "judicial notice can be taken of the fact that such institutes do not possess proper infrastructure for teaching and training students and they make misleading claims as they are run purely on commercial considerations and the efficacy of their systems in treating the patients is yet to be established scientifically."
On the aspect of prescribing minimum standards for medical education, the court noted the provisions made in the Indian Medical Council Act, 1956, Indian Medical Central Council Act, 1970 and Homeopathic Central Council Act, 1973.
About the right of these institutes to issue degrees, the judges held the view that a Supreme Court judgement had clarified that no educational institution in this country except a university as defined in the University Grants Commission Act, 1956 is entitled to award degrees.
That be the legal position, the High Court ruled that "it is not permissible to award degrees by any of these institutes." (UNI)

 

Docs climb up mobile phone tower, 6 attempt immolation
State Govt non-committal, puts onus on Centre
Yasir Saeed

SRINAGAR, July 2: In a first protest of its kind in the Valley, three Electropathic doctors climbed up the cell-phone reception tower at Press Colony here and threatened to jump to death if their demands were not accepted.
The day long efforts by police, civil administration and other government officials to persuade the doctors to get down from the tower failed amid self immolation bids by six of their colleagues, who were arrested. In the evening, a meeting of the representatives of the doctors with health minister Mangat Ram Sharma did not yield any positive result.
The minister told them nothing is in his hands and that the issue would be taken up with the union health minister, who is scheduled to arrive here tomorrow. The three doctors refused to get down from the tower and decided to spend the night there.
It all began around 5 AM when three doctors Dr Sajad, Dr Mustafa and Dr Rashid climbed up the tower and occupied it. They had to spend the night in the tent erected in Press Enclave amid heavy rains last night. Their other colleagues packed their bag and baggage and dispatched it to their respective homes.
As the news about the doctors climbing on the tower spread an army of media persons particularly those from electronic media reached the spot. They tried to take lead over each other to cover the incident live. Police too reached immediately.
As the cops tried to move towards the tower to persuade the doctors to come down, the latter threatened to jump to death in case they moved forward. The police men had to stop and the higher authorities were informed. The doctors said they decided to commit suicide today on the 80th day of their relay hunger strike in support of their demands.
Even the fire tender personnel were summoned. They reached the spot in a heavy vehicle, equipped with a ladder. Apprehending extreme step by the doctors, the authorities decided not to press the fire tender personnel into service.
With TV channels covering the incident live, the family members, relatives and friends of the doctors also reached the spot. People from other walks of life also reached there. "If anything happens to our family members, the whole responsibility would lie on the government," said Mushtaq Ahmad, brother of a doctor.
Talking to media persons on telephone from the tower Dr Sajjad said, "We have been forced to take this extreme step due to the apathy of the state government. We tried our level best to persuade the government to accept our demands but no attention was paid towards our pathetic condition."
The electropathic doctors have been on a sit down strike outside the press colony here for the last 80 days. Till now, they resorted to different means of protest which also included boot-polishing, selling clothes in the Sunday market and memoranda to the state and the central government and Congress president Sonia Gandhi written in blood.
The six electropathic doctors, who also tried self immolation, were arrested by police and referred to hospital. Reports say that their condition is out of danger.
Both mainstream and separatist leaders including Panthers Party patron Prof Bhim Singh and JKLF (A) chairman Javid Ahmad Mir also met the striking doctors and extended their sympathies with them.
The doctors are determined to continue their struggle "untill death for seeking their right". They demand a chance to serve the society while serving their efforts in the government sector.
Dr Showkat an agitating doctor said that since 1990 the state of Jammu and Kashmir generated more than 500 electropathic doctors from the colleges within and outside the state. Most of these doctors got lured towards seeking the five year degree course in Electropathy (B.E.M.S) after seeing the authorization letter of ministry of health and family welfare, government of India dated June 17, 1991 under D.O. No. 2921/DM (H&FW) 91/VIP of the central council (NEHM OF INDIA) and registration No. 1374183 SR Act of the P.N. Medical College Jammu, that offers a degree in B.E.M.S.
According to him, they have been allowed by Supreme Court (SC) of India to practice in electropathy system of medicine, under order no. SLP 11262/2000 and Delhi court order no. FOA No. 205/92, High court of Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh under writ No. 34949-m-99 date 22-07-2004 and Rajasthan Government, along with directorate of health services, Government of Delhi in notification vide no. f, 7 (512)/2003/DHS/HQ/CC/AQC/8115 dated 20-06-2003. The degree has already been recognized by Chattisgarh, Punjab and Haryana governments.
Even the Jammu and Kashmir High Court has already allowed all the electropathy doctors of the state to start their private practice in order no. COA (W) NO. 39/97 dated 09-09-1998. On this the electropathy doctors are posing questions to the authorities.
Dr Arif, an electropathic doctor said that "we have been allowed by the state government to do a private practice and work in private sector. Why not in the

 








Heading Electropathy “doctors” call off strike










latest news - JOIN COME - electropathySrinagar, July 3: The Electropathy “doctors” Tuesday called off their three-month long strike that on Monday morning took a new turn when three of them climbed up a telecom tower and threatened to commit suicide. The “doctors” got assurances from visiting Union health minister Dr Anbumani Ramadoss.
One of the “doctors” said the Union Health Minister assured the Electropathy degree holders that a “‘favourable decision” would be taken within one month.
“We have called off our sit-in strike. We are waiting for the release of our nine fellow doctors. They have been detained at the Kothi Bagh police station. Once they are released, we will remove the tent and other things from the Press Enclave here,” he said.
They have also been demanding recognition of their degrees. The Centre and the Jammu and Kashmir government was yet to recognize their Electropathy degree. The “doctors” have passed out from the Jammu-based P N Medical Institute of Electropathy.
Earlier talking to journalists, Dr Ramadoss said the Centre has not recognised Electropathy as a form of alternative medicine.
“There are thousands of such unrecognised courses run by several private institutions in the country. But, in any case, we will not let the students suffer. We will do something about it,” he added.
Earlier in the day, a top official from deputy commissioner’s office negotiated with the “doctors” from a mobile firefighting crane and persuaded them to come down. But, the “doctors” refused, though one of them after feeling giddy was brought down. Hundreds of people watched the official talking to the “doctors”, and later in the day when they were brought down in the crane.

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Threaten suicide from cellphone tower if not given jobs
ARIF SHAFI WANI


latest news - JOIN COME - electropathy Srinagar, July 2: Unemployment problem in Valley on Monday attained horrendous dimension when three unemployed “doctors” climbed a telecommunication tower more than hundred feet tall and threatened to commit suicide if government doesn’t give them jobs.
Media persons thronged Press Enclave when three unemployed Electropathy “doctors” adopted the novel but dangerous way to demand jobs after failing to move the government by sitting on a hunger protest in the Press Enclave for the past three months.
The three “doctors” identified as Rashid, Mustafa and Sajad who were on hunger strike since April 14 this year along with their colleagues at Press Enclave, climbed the mobile tower with petrol cans at 6.00 am.
Wearing shrouds, the trio stood on a platform of the tower and attempted to commit suicide. Incharge Station House Officer (SHO) Kothi Bagh, Dilraj Singh, and Assistant Sub Inspector Abdur Rehman, who were first to reach the spot, tried to pacify them.
“We asked the trio to come down from the tower but they threatened to jump. When we climbed the tower, they brandished a bottle probably filled with petrol. We had no option but to leave the spot,” the police officers told Greater Kashmir.
At 9 AM, a large number of people, including journalists thronged Press Enclave to cover the unusual event. Emotional scenes were witnessed when relatives of the “doctors” reached Press Colony. “Government will be responsible if something happens to my uncle and other doctors,” said Suraya, niece of “Dr” Rashid.
“They should have been treating patients. But they are about to end their lives. It is shame for the government that educated youth are taking such steps,” a relative of a “doctor” shouted.
As the trio waved to their relatives and colleagues, cameramen jostled to get their pictures. In the meantime, one of the “doctors” who identified himself as Sajad called Greater Kashmir office. “I am one of the doctors who are on the mobile tower. Four months ago authorities asked us to submit our papers for registration. Ironically, they are refusing to adjust us now. This is sheer injustice and fraud. We have been forced to take the extreme step because of cold response of government in fulfilling our genuine demands.”
“If government,” he said, “does not give us in writing till evening that we will be adjusted in Valley hospitals, we will be forced to jump from the tower. We are fed up living life of an unemployed despite having a degree which has been even acknowledged by the Apex Court.” “Dr” Shabir said, “The statement of commissioner secretary Health and Medical Education KB Jandial in which he had said that ‘when thousands of people have died in Kashmir, your death will make no difference’ has hurt us and infuriated us.”
“He (Jandial) is against our inclusion in the health sector. But we will fight for our rights till our last breath,” Shabir said as one of his colleague attempted self-immolation by setting his pants on fire. “One by one we have decided to end our lives. Our parents facilitated our education with hard-earned money. We worked hard and earned degrees. Still we are unemployed. We can’t be burden on our family anymore,” he said.
In the meantime, some mainstream and pro-freedom leaders arrived on the spot and tried to pacify the trio. Chairman of Panthers Party Bhim Singh contacted the trio on mobile saying “don’t take any extreme step. It is forbidden in Islam. We will discuss your problems with the government.”
Chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) Javid Ahmad Mir also contacted the trio. But their reply made him emotional. “If we commit suicide, bury our bodies at Matryrs graveyard. That’s our last wish,” Mir, quoting the trio, said.
Two more “doctors” attempted self-immolation, however, some alert cops doused the fire on their clothes, bundling them in a police vehicle. Ghulam Ahmad, a retired government employee, who was eagerly watching the trio, throughout the day, on the tower said, “Even if their demands are genuine or injustice has been done with them but this is not the way to protest. They should have approached the Court.”
Elaborating, he said there are thousands of youth in Valley who are unemployed, “Many of them will try to emulate the Electropathy doctors. They have really set a bad precedent for their self-interest,” he added.
Later in the evening, representatives of Electropathy doctors met Minister for Health Mangat Ram Sharma, Commissioner Secretary Health, KB Jandial and other officials. “We told them the representatives that providing jobs is not in our hands. Still we will plead their case with Centre provided their colleagues climb down from the tower,” a senior official of Health Department told Greater Kashmir. Mangat Ram Sharma and Jandial could not be contacted for comment.
A senior police official, wishing anonymity, said “We will take action under law against the Electropathy doctors. Presently, we have kept Fire Service men and cops ready for any eventuality.”
Later in the evening, spokesman of the Electropathy Association, Ishfaq Ahmad said, “Our colleagues who are on the tower have decided to be there till Union Minister for Health, who is arriving here tomorrow, does not assure us that we would be given jobs.”
Pertinent to mention, the Electropathy “doctors” during their nearly three month hunger strike have resorted to different ways of protest like wearing shrouds, selling clothes, and writing memorandums with their blood.


Electropathy “doctors” call off strike
latest news - JOIN COME - electropathySrinagar, July 3: The Electropathy “doctors” Tuesday called off their three-month long strike that on Monday morning took a new turn when three of them climbed up a telecom tower and threatened to commit suicide. The “doctors” got assurances from visiting Union health minister Dr Anbumani Ramadoss.
One of the “doctors” said the Union Health Minister assured the Electropathy degree holders that a “‘favourable decision” would be taken within one month.
“We have called off our sit-in strike. We are waiting for the release of our nine fellow doctors. They have been detained at the Kothi Bagh police station. Once they are released, we will remove the tent and other things from the Press Enclave here,” he said.
They have also been demanding recognition of their degrees. The Centre and the Jammu and Kashmir government was yet to recognize their Electropathy degree. The “doctors” have passed out from the Jammu-based P N Medical Institute of Electropathy.
Earlier talking to journalists, Dr Ramadoss said the Centre has not recognised Electropathy as a form of alternative medicine.
“There are thousands of such unrecognised courses run by several private institutions in the country. But, in any case, we will not let the students suffer. We will do something about it,” he added.
Earlier in the day, a top official from deputy commissioner’s office negotiated with the “doctors” from a mobile firefighting crane and persuaded them to come down. But, the “doctors” refused, though one of them after feeling giddy was brought down. Hundreds of people watched the official talking to the “doctors”, and later in the day when they were brought down in the crane.


















NASEER A GANAI

latest news - JOIN COME - electropathySrinagar, May 20: On Saturday evening when the ousted contractual lecturers were protesting in Press Enclave here, a psychiatrist on seeing their condition said, “If this uncertainty continues in their lives, they might turn into schizophrenics.”
And on Sunday, Greater Kashmir received two postcards written with blood by the members of “Electropathy Degree holders,” who are on a sit-in for the last 35 days, addressed to the Chief Minister: “Plea for Justice.”
Left to their fate, these youth don’t know what is in store for them.
“I am a Postgraduate in English Literature, and throughout my life I have been all along concerned about my studies. Now I am out here and am supposed to shout slogans against government injustice despite knowing government doesn’t care about anything,” said a contractual lecturer. He said the government took arbitrary decision and ousted them from contractual jobs when the case was still in the Court. “This is what they repay us for over services,” said a lecturer.
With frustration, anger, and above all helplessness writ large on their faces, the qualified lecturers have no idea what course they should take. “The government has frustrated us. I don’t know how to shout,” said a lady with M Phil degree. The ousted contractuals lecturers have only one problem: Why government didn’t accept their demands and why it does recruit people against available vacancies instead of ruining career of youth by engaging them for a year and then throwing them out?
In contrast, the “Electropathy degree holders” are facing a serious problem. First, the government does not recognize their “degrees” and second they are jobless. “I went for this ‘degree’ after cross checking all details about the ‘PN Medical Institute of Electropathy Institute,’ Jammu,” said Sajjad Ahmad.
The brochure of the institute was apparently impressive. It has senior legislators Ali Muhammad Sagar, Muhammad Akbar Ganai, and present works Minister Gulchain Singh Charak among its patrons. “I thought when all these people are its patrons and when former Chief Justice of India, Justice Shiv Raj V Patil is being shown as chief guest in one of functions of ‘Electropathy doctors’, then how come this ‘degree’ become irrelevant,” argued Sajjad.
In 2006, he said, Kupwara District Development Board took a decision to employ “Electropathy doctors” and now the Health Department says the “degree” is not recognized. “This is sheer injustice and this way they are pushing us to commit suicide,” said Sajjad.
Talk of suicide, according to the worried psychiatrist, is the manifestation of helplessness and frustration. But then who cares in the Valley even if the letters are written with blood.
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Srinagar, May 30
Students, holding degree in the alternative medicine of electropathy, are on an indefinite fast against the state government's apparent backtracking after it asked them to send applications so that they could be considered for absorption as doctors in alternative medicine and posted across the state. As their dharna completes 50 days on Friday, which they sardonically say will be observed as "golden jubilee function", the government has shown little sign of considering their demands in a state where unemployment has probably hit the youth the hardest. "This government first gave us hope and then concrete promises. And when we were just full of hope of jobs, it simply backtracked," says burqa-clad Shabeena Altaf, who has been sitting on dharna with a large number of pass-outs from Naturo-Electro Homeo Medicos, New Delhi. Though electropathy is not recognised by most of the states in India, but what has angered them, all with four-and-half years of degree, is that J&K government initially took a lead in promising them government jobs, raising their hopes, now turned into bitterness. Then district development board, Kupwara, chairman Peerzada Mohammad Syed, now state Congress president, recognised bachelor of electropathy medicine and surgery, in an official meeting on July 14 last year and Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad followed it up offering them jobs in the National Rural Heath Mission, the agitators said. And soon his government came out with an advertisement on January 9 this year, asking them, having degrees in different forms of alternative medicine, to send applications by January 31 for consideration for jobs. "We felt so good thinking that our dream was close to realisation," says Ashfaq Wani, who is heading the agitation. Ironically,the government slammed the doors on them, saying they were in "wrong" in offering them jobs. It said electropathy was not recognised by the central body of alternative medicines, offering the reason. "What a farce," says Altaf . The state government, she says, has long-recognised Amachi, a form of medication practised by tribals in the state. Amachi is not recognised by the central body. The government has so far stuck to its decision not to recognise these practitioners of electropathy.