Jun 25, 2017-
About one and half years ago, the government formed a high level commission to draft the Health Profession Education Policy (HPEP). Despite its recommendations to fix the fee for students who wanted to pursue the faculty of medicine, the government was dilly-dallying to do so.
As a result, the medical colleges were charging exorbitant sums for MBBS and post
graduate courses. Tribhuvan University has finally fixed fees amounting to Rs3.1 million for MD/MS programmes and has instructed the Institution of Medicine (IOM) to charge fees accordingly (‘Rs 3.1m fee set for MD/MS courses’, June 22, Page 3). However, the challenge for both TU and IOM is whether the medical colleges will abide by this rule. Any colleges found to be still charging exorbitant fees should be lawfully punished. Likewise, the fees for the MBBS course need to be fixed immediately so that studying medicine will be affordable for aspiring students. The government should take sincere initiatives to monitor whether private schools are strictly following its established criteria. Parents have been cheated by these schools in the name of providing quality education.
-Rai Biren Bangdel, Maharajgunj
It seems Nepalis have their prices fixed.Someone killed in an ‘andolan’ will receive martyrdom and their family a cash compensation. Families of those killed in a road accident also get cash. The government has a progressive provision in place to compensate people eaten by tigers, goaded by rhinos, trampled by elephants or gored by boars in the fringe of the wildlife kingdom (‘Where wild things are’, June 16, Page 6). As correctly pointed out in the editorial, this monetary compensation as a form of justice for crops lost or human fatality is not the ultimate solution to a problem. This may have been an effective tool to appease people during the Maoist war, but it will only increase people’s greed during these peaceful times.
While there may be many strategies to avoid human-wildlife conflict, one of the best ways would be to create a wideland buffer or gap between their habitations and to completely prohibit cultivation of crops till at least 10 miles away from animal habitats. These days, villagers have started planting crops within a stone’s throw distance from a hungry rhino or an elephant. How do these people expect these pachyderms not to come and graze? The government must push back farming away from the park if it wants to avoid human-wildlife conflict. For a long term solution to a host of problems, not just human-wildlife conflict, Nepal will also have to address family planning more seriously. We have far too many mouths to feed. So the Nepali government better start looking for concrete and durable solutions to all socio-economic, political and environmental problems rather than doling out money that is probably dished out by donors through (I)NGOs.
- Manohar Shrestha, via email
Published: 25-06-2017 08:27