Fadnavis requests doctors to withdraw strike, says will ensure proper security

A section of resident doctors, late on Thursday, called off their four-day protest, after chief minister Devendra Fadnavis promised a slew of measures to protect them against attacks and the government told the Bombay high court that trained guards will be posted at city hospitals by April 5, and across the state by April 30.

Patients wait outside Sion Hospital in Mumbai as resident doctors continued with their strike on Thursday.

Just last night, a resident doctor at Mumbai's Sion Hospital was beaten up by the family of a baby admitted to the neo-natal unit of the hospital.

The Bombay High Court directed them to resume work immediately and said their issues and demands can be amicably resolved with the state government.

The High Court ordered that no punitive action should be taken against the protesting doctors once they resume their duties.

However, they did not skip duty citing inconvenience to poor patients who come from different parts of the country for treatment at the premier hospital. Only emergency duties will be attended to, it said.

The strike by Maharashtra's doctors, who are protesting a spate of assaults on colleagues by patients' relatives, entered the fourth day today even as almost 2,000 of them got expulsion notice a day ago. "While some have joined back, many have made a decision to continue the strike", said an MARD doctor from JJ Hospital requesting anonymity. The doctors, who had gone on mass casual leave since Sunday, demanding proper security, are yet to join work. The absence of the doctors has, however, badly hit 18 hospitals affiliated to medical colleges in Mumbai.

"Only emergency duty schedule of resident doctors will be followed during this time", he said. The situation is going out of control as over 40,000 junior doctors joined 4,000 colleagues who are already on strike in the state on Wednesday.

In view of the same and high court orders, MARD requested all doctors to resume work immediately, MARD President Yashowardhan Kabra said in a statement. Resident doctors of Delhi hospitals will go on mass leave between 9am to 4pm on Thursday, said FORDA president Pankaj Solanki.

A number of private hospitals, including Sir Ganga Ram hospital today said they have chose to extend support to agitating doctors in Maharashtra and their OPD services will not be available tomorrow. Relatives of a patient attacked him with an iron rod, alleging negligence when the patient was referred to another hospital due to a lack of the required expertise.

  • Santos West