New Delhi, March 21: About 4500 doctors in Maharashtra are on mass leave protesting against the ruthless attacks on doctors in the last few days. Worrying about such life-threatening conditions and unfavorable conditions of working, the doctors across various hospitals in Mumbai have demanded strict action from the government against the recent spate of attacks on resident doctors. “It is about safety of resident doctor’s across state. Strike to continue until next step is decided; meetings lined up today”,  Dr Lokesh of Mumbai was quoted by ANI.

On Monday, as resident doctors across Mumbai went on strike after recent incidents of violence against doctors, many people were seen outside Sion Hospital in a helpless manner. Meanwhile, Dr Avinash Supe,Dean, KEM Hospital, Mumbai said all emergency arrangements were made so that patients do not suffer due to the ongoing protests.  The demands of the doctors include implementation of Doctor Protection Act 2010 to avoid such instances in future, installation of CCTV cameras and immediate action against people attacking the doctors.

Four such incidences of attack on resident doctors have been reported during this month. On Saturday, violence broke out at Sion hospital around 10.30 PM where a resident doctor named Rohit Kumar was allegedly beaten up by a patient’s relatives. The patient, however, lost his life. Police said a total of three people have been arrested in this connection. Similar incidences have been reported from Dhule and Nashik and Aurangabad, where relatives of patients brutally thrashed the doctors. On March 12, a resident doctor in Dhule-based government hospital was brutally assaulted by distraught relatives after a patient died.  On March 16, an intern Dr Rahul Patil and a nurse were beaten up in a Nashik-based government hospital. In Aurangabad, relatives of a patient bashed the doctor at Ghati Government hospital on Sunday night after getting into an argument.

The Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD) had assured the Mumbai High Court that it would not go on a strike and hence took to protest till further step was taken by the government. Taking the ongoing turmoil into consideration, Mumbai Mayor V Mahadeshwar on Monday appealed the doctors to end the protest and said legal action will be taken against doctors if they fail to resume work by Monday evening. Mahadeshwar said that the DG Police has deployed around 400 extra armed forces in various hospitals.

Some of the demands made by the resident doctors include access to only two family members of the patients, alarm system to be installed in all hospitals, increase in the number of security personnel in the hospitals across the city. About 75 percent of resident doctors across major Mumbai health centers, including Lokmanya Tilak Municipal General Hospital, KEM Hospital, JJ Hospital and Nair Hospital, have gone on leave, India Today report stated.  Dr Avinash Supe, Dean, KEM Hospital, Mumbai said, “We are making all emergency arrangements so that patients do not suffer”.