Fighting cancer,this engg student has to battle HRD rules too

For K Nithin Reddy,the year has been difficult. A third-year Mechanical Engineering student at National Institute of Technology...

Written by Anubhuti Vishnoi | New Delhi | Published: July 19, 2010 4:25:41 am

For K Nithin Reddy,the year has been difficult. A third-year Mechanical Engineering student at National Institute of Technology (NIT) Silchar,20-year-old Nithin is suffering from Hodgkin’s Lymphoma — a type of cancer that originates from the white blood cells and spreads across the lymph system. However,as he undergoes the fortnightly chemotherapy sessions,Nithin has worries other than the Stage II B of Lymphoma: like whether he would be able to complete his engineering at all.

Compounding his woes is the rule book of the Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry. While Reddy has sought a transfer from NIT Silchar in Assam to NIT Warangal,his hometown in Andhra Pradesh,so that he can continue his treatment at the Nizam’s Institute of Medical Science (NIMS),Hyderabad,the ministry has told him that the rules do not permit such a shift as students are allocated seats at the institutes on the basis of the rank attained in the All India Engineering Entrance Examination (AIEEE). His last hope lies with Minister of State,HRD,D Purandeshwari,who is also from Andhra and who has taken up his cause.

Since she received Nithin’s application for a transfer,Purandeshwari has questioned this no-transfer policy and sought to know why it could not be reviewed to accommodate genuine cases. The issue is now learnt to have reached the office of HRD Minister Kapil Sibal.

Reddy has his fingers crossed. The only child of a farmer,becoming an engineer and landing a job were dreams that he had only now dared to dream.

“I have not got any positive response yet,” Reddy told The Indian Express,speaking from Hyderabad after a chemotherapy session on Saturday.

He recalled that it was only in March that he suspected something was wrong with him. “I began to lose a lot of weight and felt very weak. I took leave and went home and my parents took me to the Hyderabad hospital,where I was diagnosed with cancer.”

Every day now is a struggle. On Monday,his father Kotha Mahipal Reddy will leave for NIT Silchar to request the authorities there to allow Nithin to appear for his sixth semester exams a week later as he is too weak to travel right now. The Silchar NIT begins its session for this year on Monday,and Nithin has to still complete one year.

The transfer to NIT Warangal would spare the family some of its travails. Currently Nithin has to regularly travel from Silchar to Hyderabad. He has to undergo chemotherapy every 15 days and a minimum of 12 chemotherapy cycles,running well into October. Hodgkin’s Lymphoma is considered curable provided timely chemotherapy sessions are ensured.

Justifying the HRD Ministry’s strict no-transfer policy,an official said: “There are several requests for transfers on a variety of grounds. However,it is very difficult to distinguish which is a genuine ground and which is not. Most importantly though,NITs as per rules do not allow transfers of students from one institute to another.” He added that not a single request for transfer has ever been entertained.

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