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Support swells for protest

New Delhi, May 14: Some 200 medicos protesting against reservations began an indefinite hunger strike on the AIIMS lawns today, boosted by support from their peers in other states as well as engineers.

IIT alumni and engineering students arrived to back the students from five medical colleges, who began their fast around 10 am under a specially-erected tent.

“We’ll neither move nor eat until the government listens to us,” said Anirudh Lochan, who joined the hunger strike after a quick breakfast of some milk, a mango and a paratha.

As the strike disrupted services in state hospitals, the government cancelled senior doctors’ leave and asked hospitals to put them on duty. It cited the apex court directive against disruption of medical services.

Striking junior doctors offered “parallel” outpatient services outside the hospitals.

Some of the fasting doctors said they would join the parallel services tomorrow.

“The least I can do is give moral support to this cause,” said Satvik Sarwade, an IIT Kharagpur graduate now in Delhi. Students from IIT Kanpur, Sri Ram College of Commerce and a college in Rohtak also arrived at AIIMS.

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