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Doctors’ protest spreads to other parts of country

Doctors’ protest spreads to other parts of country

The protests began after a patient’s relatives assaulted the doctors at NRS Medical College and Hospital in Kolkata on Sunday night.

New Delhi: The stir by junior doctors protesting assault on two of their colleagues at a hospital in Kolkata assumed nationwide proportions Friday with government doctors in various states expressing solidarity and resorting to agitations.

The protests began after a patient’s relatives assaulted the doctors at NRS Medical College and Hospital in Kolkata on Sunday night.

The doctors have demanded Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s unconditional apology and set six conditions for the state government to withdraw their four-day-long stir that disrupted healthcare services across West Bengal.

Among other things, they are pressing for more stringent laws to protect them from such assaults.

The Indian Medical Association (IMA) launched a three-day nationwide protest from Friday to express solidarity with the doctors and called for a strike on June 17 with withdrawal of non-essential health services.

In Delhi, scores of doctors at several government and private hospitals  held demonstrations by  boycotting work, marching and raising slogans.

They also met Union health minister Harsh Vardhan and apprised him of the medical fraternity’s demand of ensuring safety and security of doctors in face of any violence in hospital premises.

In a letter to Banerjee, the Union minister has urged her to ensure an “amicable end” to the protests and provide a secure working environment for doctors.

Around 4,500 resident doctors in Maharashtra, including some 2,800 in Mumbai, went on a one-day strike.

The Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD) had declared that junior doctors at government hospitals in the state will not perform surgeries or attend to out-patient departments (OPDs) between 8 am and 5 pm Friday.

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