Mumbai, March 24: On Thursday Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis appealed to the doctors who went on ‘mass leave’ for four days to resume to their work. CM Fadnavis also assured doctors to provide them with security in hospitals. Also Union Health Minister J.P. Nadda asked states to take measures to improve the security of the doctors.
More than 4000 doctors in Maharashtra had gone on ‘mass leave’ to protest against the inadequate security provided to them. Initially the Bombay High Court asked doctors to resume to their work. After the HC’s direction and the CM’s appeal, the representatives of the protesting doctors went into a huddle to discuss the directive and the steps to be taken thereof. According to Dr Sagar Mundada, the Chairman of the Indian Medical Association’s youth wing, a decision on the matter will be taken soon.
More than 400 surgeries were postponed as the doctors went on mass leave. This came against two incidents that took place and were reported from Wadia Maternity Hospital in Parel and Aurangabad where doctors were assaulted by relatives of patients. Also there was another incident that recently occurred in Dhule, which took place on March 14.
The HC asked the doctors to get back to work and resolve their issues and demands cordially with the government. A division bench of chief justice Manjula Chellur and Justice G.S. Kulkarni gave the directive while hearing a petition filed by activist Afak Mandaviya seeking action against the protesting doctors. The HC also directed the government and management of various hospitals not to take any penal action against the doctors who were served notice yesterday for not resuming their duties.
“The doctors will have to first go and resume their duty. All other issues can be kindly sorted out gradually,” chief justice Chellur said. “We understand that the doctors are working in strained and horrible conditions sometimes, but we request them to resume work immediately,” she said.
Chief Minister Fadnavis urged the doctors to follow their professional ethics by serving the people. “Because of the acts of a few irresponsible people of attacking doctors, it is not right to deny the poor their right to access to the medical facilities. I appeal to the doctors and their organisations to call off the strike and return to work,” he said.
Earlier one of the spokesperson from Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors MARD said that “We have been assured that around 500 security personnel will be deputed from the Maharashtra State Security Corporation latest by April 5. The remaining 600 will be deployed at hospitals across the state by 30 April. State Advocate General Rohit Deo informed the High Court that the government has decided to deploy an additional 1,100 armed police personnel from Maharashtra State Security Corporation in all the state and civic-run hospitals.
State medical education minister Girish Mahajan had earlier warned the protesting resident doctors that they would lose six months’ pay and face suspension if they did not resume work by 8pm yesterday. However, the doctors continued with their protest.