“No” To Corruption

Dr. Govinda K.C. under police escort, January 2018. Source: Bill Robins, SJ

Fourteen “fasts unto death,” yet carrying on!  Dr. Govinda K.C., born in rural eastern Nepal in 1957, was able to complete high school in Kathmandu, with scholarship help, and to study medicine in Bangladesh.  He is an orthopedic surgeon at the Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital, Kathmandu.

Source: change.org

He serves the poor who throng his clinics, getting as many as possible to the free beds which are allocated to each professor.  He is known for humanitarian work in Nepal and internationally, and for his activism in favor of independent academic functioning of the government medical institutions in Nepal.

Dr. K.C. has been a prominent campaigner for medical sector reform in response to public allegations of both corruption and of undue political pressure to give medical college affiliation to facilities with inadequate infrastructures.  He has accused Nepal’s Chief Justice of supporting such corruption.

He is unmarried and lives in the Teaching Hospital quarters.  He has his mother, two brothers and a laptop.  When asked to list three priorities in his life, he mentioned service to patients and his students — and no third priority.

Fr. Thomas E. Gafney, S.J. took a similar stand against corruption and paid with his life (IgNation 08 March 2015).

Fr. Thomas E. Gaffney, SJ. Jesuit Sources.

Our world needs prophets like Dr. Govinda and Fr. Tom.  Thankfully, there are many more.  Will their actions end corruption?  I doubt it, but their calls for justice challenge us to look at the little corners of our world which we are responsible for, and to honestly look for signs of corruption around and within ourselves.  I cannot do more than voice my support for Dr. Govinda’s stance.

I was happily able to keep Fr. Tom’s Social Service Center growing.  Other Jesuits continue to guide this important ministry.

Each one of us has material, political and spiritual power to some extent.  Hopefully we use this power in loving ways, ways that uplift those with whom and for whom we live.  Are we politically active, demanding just service from our elected government representatives?  Do we critique our apostolates and our communities to ensure justice for one another and the people we serve?  Do we honestly examine our actions to rid ourselves of any “me first” attitudes?

Hopefully we can each do what we can to help all enjoy God’s gifts as people fully alive!


Bill Robins, SJ, is Socius to the Regional Superior of Nepal, and superior at Kamai Niwas Jesuit Training Center in Kathmandu.

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