Kerala: Suspended school teacher stabs doctor to death during check-up
A suspended male school teacher who was taken to a hospital by the police after an altercation with his family and neighbors allegedly stabbed a 23-year-old doctor, Vandana Das, to death in Kerala's Kollam district on Wednesday. The Indian Medical Association (IMA) called for a 24-hour statewide strike protesting Das's killing and demanding laws to prevent violence against healthcare professionals in workplaces.
Accused attacked doctor while she was dressing his wound
According to the police, Das was dressing a wound on the leg of the accused, S Sandeep (42), when he abruptly lost control and attacked everyone standing nearby using a scissor and a scalpel. Das sustained grievous wounds, while the police personnel accompanying the accused were also injured. She was rushed to a private hospital in Thiruvananthapuram but succumbed hours later.
IMA, state government doctors protest
While calling for a statewide strike—that will continue until 8:00am on Thursday—the IMA said the ICU and the emergency wings will be exempt from the strike. Earlier in the day, healthcare professionals flocked to the streets in Kottarakkara town, where the incident occurred, to protest the incident. Doctors of the Kerala Government Medical Officers' Association (KGMOA) also joined the statewide protest.
Declare hospitals as 'safe zones': IMA
CPI-M tarnishing Kerala's image: Union cabinet minister
Soon after the tragedy, the BJP and Congress jumped on the Kerala government, accusing it of doing little to ensure the safety of healthcare professionals. Expressing shock, Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, V Muraleedharan called the incident "apathy and callousness" of CM Pinarayi Vijayan and the "misgovernance" of the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) for bringing disrepute to the state.
Will amend law to protect doctors, hospitals: Health minister
Meanwhile, state Health Minister Veena George kicked up a political storm with her statement that Das got scared when the attack occurred because she was a house surgeon and inexperienced. Kerala Congress chief K Sudhakaran slammed George and questioned her intention behind calling the doctor "inexperienced." Last month, George said the state government will amend a law to prevent violence against doctors and hospitals.Share this timeline