There seems to be no end to the continuing conflict between the students and management of the SR Medical College and Research Centre located in the coastal area of Varkala in Kerala’s Thiruvananthapuram district. The college management, on Tuesday, had issued a show cause notice to six students of the 2016 batch for allegedly disrupting the Medical Council of India’s inspection on the campus and for allegedly violating the ‘rules and regulations’.
On July 4, when a team from the MCI arrived at the SR Medical College, a group of students from the 2016 batch (the only MBBS batch in the college) informed the MCI officials about the lack of medical equipment and facilities in the college and about the management’s practise of bringing in fake patients from outside just for the MCI inspection.
The inspection by the MCI was following a Kerala High Court order in June 4, directing the body to conduct an inspection in the college within 30 days to check whether the management has done anything to improve the conditions on the campus. But a scuffle between the college management and the students led to the cancelling of the inspection, following which a show cause notice was issued against six of the students who led the protests.
As per the notice by the college management, six students from the 2016 MBBS batch were found to have indulged in “activities continuously violating the discipline, rules and regulations of the institution including unauthorised videography and creating chaos during the MCI inspection”. This, the management said, disrupted the “smooth assessment of the infrastructural facilities and teaching programmes at the institution”.
A group of students from the college had created a Facebook page called ‘Stand With Students of SR Medical College’, where they started posting visuals of the alleged ‘fake patients’ being brought into the hospital. The videos posted on the page show visuals of empty wards and hospital premises which, according to the students, were crowded at the time of the MCI visit.
Speaking to TNM, Sidharth, one of the students who has been served the notice, denied all the allegations. “As far as taking the videos were concerned, we had to bring out the truth about how the college was staging the affairs to give a wrong impression to the MCI team that everything was fine with the college,” he said.
He also added that the videos and photographs, which expose the unethical practices of the college management, have already been sent to the MCI to take a proper decision.
In an explanatory letter sent to the principal of the college, the students stated that the show cause notice is an attempt to victimise them as they were at the forefront of exposing the real situation in the college.