Several resident doctors at the AIIMS here worked with bandages on their heads in a symbolic protest and have decided to boycott work on Friday in solidarity with the doctors protesting against an attack on their colleagues in West Bengal. Condemning the violence in West Bengal, the AIIMS Resident Doctors’ Association (RDA) has also urged the RDAs across the country to join the token strike. In a statement issued on Thursday, the AIIMS RDA said the ongoing and worsening of violence against medical doctors in West Bengal is worrisome and disheartening.
“There is a complete breakdown of law and order, with reports of mobs attacking doctor hostels with weapons. The government has failed to provide protection and justice to doctors,” the statement read. “AIIMS RDA condemns this in words and in spirit. Residents across the country are deeply hurt by these turn of events. Keeping in view of our commitment towards safe and non-violent working environment for residents, AIIMS RDA stands in support of our colleagues in West Bengal and has decided to hold protest on June 13 which would be followed by one day strike of work on June 14 which include OPD, routine and ward services except for emergency services,” it said. They urged the West Bengal chief minister to intervene in the matter and address the security concerns so that residents can continue serving patients.
The Indian Medical Association (IMA) Wednesday directed the members of all its state branches to stage protests and wear black badges on Friday. In a communique to all its state presidents and secretaries, the IMA has asked them to organise demonstrations in front of the district collectors’ offices from 10 am to 12 noon on Friday and hand over a memorandum addressed to the prime minister to the collectors in every district.
The Delhi Medical Association (DMA) has also urged its members to observe a “Black Day” on Thursday against the brutal attack. Simultaneously, all the local branches and individual members of the IMA will send an appeal to the prime minister and the Union home minister, demanding a central Act on violence against doctors and hospitals.
The IMA has also urged its state branches to communicate the information to the government doctors’ organisations of the states, request for their support and issue a press statement to this effect. “The gruesome incident in NRS Medical College, Kolkata, is of barbaric nature.
IMA condemns the violence perpetrated on a young doctor. The entire medical fraternity expresses solidarity with the resident doctors who are on strike. The IMA headquarters hereby declares All India Protest Day on Friday,” an IMA statement said.
The assault on the junior doctors following the death of a patient at the state-run NRS Medical College in Kolkata on Monday night left an intern seriously injured and the strike, which was initiated there, spread to medical institutions in the districts. Emergency wards, outdoor facilities and pathological units of many state-run medical colleges and hospitals and a number of private medical facilities in West Bengal have remained closed over the past two days in the wake of the protest.