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Maharashtra resident doctors threaten to go on State-Wide Strike from tomorrow

To fortify the resident doctors striking at KEM hospital in Mumbai, Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors ( MARD) has extended support to them stating that if the demands of the doctors are not fulfilled by tomorrow night 8 p.m, MARD shall go on a statewide strike.

With the assault of three resident doctors working in Mumbai’s KEM hospital, the 1200 resident doctors of KEM hospital have been on strike since yesterday demanding justice for their colleagues. Two persons were arrested yesterday in connection with the incident, but they were later granted bail.

The decision of state-wide strike comes after a meeting today between the members of Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD) and Medical Education Minister Vinod Tawde failed to yield any positive result.

“We want to know why all accused who attacked our colleagues are not in jail? Why police did not book them under the IPC Section 326 (which is non-bailable offence). Why two accused are still absconding?” said Sagar Mundada, MARD President.

“We discussed various issues with the Minister and gave him one month’s time to resolve them. But on this issue (attack) we want immediate action. Doctors must be provided adequate safety and security. Mere assurance would not do,” said Mundada told PTI.

“All resident doctors have decided to stop work from 8 PM tomorrow after Ganapati Visarjan is over,” he said.

Repeated incidents of assaults have taken place on doctors in the past one year. In KEM itself, a female resident was assaulted in the month of August, with the alleged culprits still absconding.

Resident doctors of KEM Hospital are already on strike since yesterday morning and other MARD members would join them as a mark of solidarity. The KEM doctors are demanding substantial increase in number of CCTV cameras installed in the hospital and deployment of more security guards. 

They have demanded at least 145 CCTV cameras (only 10 are operational now) and an additional 200 security personnel (current strength 168). 

Meanwhile, to maintain medical services in the KEM Hospital, the administration has roped in senior doctors, lecturers, professors and assistant professors.

MARD has over 4,500 doctors as its members across the state, the organisation has been repeatedly  demanding proper security facilities for the doctors as well as better implementation of Doctors Protection Act. A state-wide strike by them would badly affect medical services in the state-run hospitals.

( with inputs from PTI)

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