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Junior doctors' protest at NRS enters sixth day

Junior doctors' protest at NRS enters sixth day

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 16 Jun 2019, 01:28 pm

Kolkata, Jun 16 (IBNS): The protest strike by the junior doctors at the  Nil Ratan Sircar Medical College and Hospital (NRSMCH) in Kolkata entered its sixth day on Sunday as the protesters decided in a late night meeting on Saturday that they would not meet Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at state secretariat Nabanna.

The protesting doctors on Sunday will decide in a meeting the alternative venue to hold talks with Banerjee, latest news reports said.

Meanwhile, in view of the recent assault on doctors in West Bengal, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare Harsh Vardhan has written a letter to the Chief Ministers of all States and UTs drawing their attention for strict action against any person who assaults doctors.

Expressing deep concern over the recent act of violence against doctors, the Union Health Minister stated that incidents of assaults on doctors are reported from different parts of the country and this leads to sudden strike by doctors, gravely affecting the healthcare services.

“Resident doctors in many parts of the country are agitating and not providing healthcare services. Agitations by doctors in West Bengal seem to be getting aggravated and taking shape of strike by both Government and Private sector doctors, all over the country,” he wrote.

Earlier on Saturday, staying firm in their own demands, the protesting junior doctors had turned down Mamata Banerjee's offer to sit across table at Nabanna and urged her to visit the hospital.

"After the kind of language our Chief Minister used against us, we have decided not to go to Nabanna. We are worried about the patients. We urge our Chief Minister to come to NRS and talk to us and find a solution,"  an intern of NRS on behalf of the agitators had said.

Addressing a press conference on Saturday evening after the doctors refused her call to have a talk at Nabanna, Banerjee once again urged the doctors to return to work, assuring them that her government would not invoke the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA).

"We have the laws, but we do not want to use them... We are not going to take any stringent action against any of the agitating junior doctors since we don't want to ruin their career," Banerjee said.

This comes even as 300 doctors, which include the heads of departments of medical colleges and other hospitals in Kolkata, Burdwan, Darjeeling and North 24 Parganas districts, have resigned from their positions.

The junior doctors went for an indefinite strike across West Bengal after relatives of Kolkata's Tangra resident 85-year-old Md. Sayeed, whose death at the NRS Hospital prompted cries of medical negligence from them, brought some 200 people to the hospital and beat up junior doctors, seriously wounding Paribaha Mukhopadhayay on Monday night.

The matter got more complex after Banerjee visited the SSKM Hospital a day ago and lost her cool over the protesters.

Banerjee, amid sloganeering by the agitators, alleged that the protesters are "outsiders". She even sent an ultimatum to the agitators to join work within four hours or else they would face action. However, Banerjee's ultimatum didn't change the situation much.

Doctors from Delhi, Mumbai and other cities have also joined the protest against the assault on Mukhopadhyay.

Going tough with the Mamata Banerjee-led West Bengal government, the Calcutta High Court on Friday asked the ruling dispensation to mediate with the junior doctors protesting against the attack on their mate Paribaha Mukhopadhyay.

Junior doctors' protest at NRS enters sixth day

India Blooms News Service
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