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BMC activists threaten to stage sit-in outside Balochistan CM House

QUETTA: Students and faculty of former Bolan Medical College on Friday threatened to stage a sit-in outside Chief Minister House if the government did not implement a deal struck between them and the administration on Feb 25.

“The Balochistan government and our leadership reached an agreement on Feb 25. According to that agreement the provincial government pledged to restore previous status of the college in 40 days,” said a protest leader Abdullah Safi in a press conference. He was flanked by another leader Dr Ilyas Baloch.

Bolan Medical College was changed from a college to a university under the Bolan University of Medical and Health Sciences (BUMHS) Act No VII, 2017.

The move was resented both by the students and employees as problems began to surface when the BUMHS started functioning with its new setup under the control of the governor of Balochistan.

According to a report, the new administration of BUMHS abolished the district quota system, which for decades had ensured equal opportunity to candidates from poorer districts of Balochistan.

Tuition and hostel fees were also increased. Students used to receive scholarships in the form of monthly stipends which was also cut down.

There were numerous complaints of irregularities in the entry test for admission to the university. As a result, BUMHS became a battleground of protests and not a medical education institute.

On Feb 24, police arrested over two dozen BUMHS students and employees during a protest outside the Balochistan Assembly. They were demanding dismissal of the varsity’s vice chancellor; restoration of the status of the Bolan Medical University and a reduction in the fee structure.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 13th, 2020.


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