Pradeep Pattanayak

With no signs of any abatement in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine anytime soon, hundreds of Ukraine-returned medicos in Odisha who had to drop their studies midway due to escalation of war crisis are now staring at an uncertain future. 

Around 50 such students of the State on Saturday met Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan in Bhubaneswar, seeking the government’s intervention to find a way out to end the problems surrounding their career. 

Minister Pradhan has also assured the students to extend all possible help to the aggrieved students. 

“The Health department is working on finding a way to help out the Ukraine-returned medical students put their career back on track,” said Pradhan. 

According to sources, the number of Ukraine-returned medical students in Odisha is over 400. While most of these students are now oscillating between hope and despair, the future of the ones who are in the third and fourth year of their medical course seems to be hanging by a thread. 

“The war has left us in midstream. I am trying my best to complete the theory parts. But what about the practical which is essential in medical study,” asked Lipi Mohapatra of Berhampur. Lipi is a third year student of Kharkiv National Medical University. 

Another student from Rourkela, Supriya Hota has the same ordeal to share. “I am a fourth year medical student. Fourth year is largely based on practical which is not possible for us to do it here. I request the State government to allow us to do practical in the clinics here,” urged Hota. 

Not only the students but their parents are also undergoing a severe mental tension. “We the family members are more concerned about our daughter’s career. It would be better for these students if the government accommodates them in the medical colleges here,” said Umakanta Mohapatra. 

Prof Dr Sidhharth Dash has however suggested a welcoming step to address the issue. Dash said that the best possible way for students to set their career on the right path amidst this uncertainty is that the External Affairs Ministry should negotiate with its counterparts in Ukraine’s neighbouring countries like Poland and Hungary where the course is almost similar to that of Ukraine to get the student accommodated in the medical institutions there. 

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