17 Jun 2019
Doctors meet Mamata Banerjee, call off strike after seven days
Doctors in West Bengal, who had been protesting against violence since last week, called off their strike on Monday after meeting Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.
This important meeting comes days after she directed doctors to get "back to work" or "face consequences".
Notably, doctors from all over the country supported their Bengal counterparts in their agitation.
Here's what happened at the meeting.
A quick recap of what happened so far
Last week, two doctors at Kolkata's NRS Hospital were beaten by the kin of 75-year-old, who claimed the elderly died due to 'medical negligence'.
As doctors took to streets against violence, Mamata called their agitation "politically motivated" and labeled them as "outsiders".
Mamata's apathy made doctors angrier and they continued protesting which hit medical facilities. On Monday, the Indian Medical Association (IMA) called a nationwide strike.
State officials, doctors and Mamata sat down for a chat
After refusing to have any sort of conversation with Mamata, the doctors softened their stand on Monday. However, they put a condition that the meeting will not happen behind closed doors and the Trinamool head agreed to live-stream the conversation.
The meeting was attended by 31 junior doctors, West Bengal health secretary, MoS Chandrima Bhattacharya, and state officials.
Only two regional channels got permission for coverage.
"We want to work but are living under fear"
At the meeting, a representative said doctors want to resume their duties but they were working under fear.
"We have come here with 12 demands. The punishment against the attackers should be such that a message is sent out to all. We understand the situation the public is in. But we have no option but to continue with the protest," the representative reportedly said.
Have always condemned attack against doctors, Mamata told representatives
When one of the representatives from Cooch Behar said Mamata should stand behind junior doctors and say the attack was wrong, she replied, "We have always condemned the attack against the doctors."
Mamata proposed the deployment of one nodal officer at hospitals to ensure security isn't compromised with.
She also underlined that there should be no communication gap between doctors and patients.
Soon, hospitals will get grievance redressal units
Notably, junior doctors had demanded that grievance redressal units should be set up in all state-run hospitals, and Mamata agreed.
Rajiv Sinha, the Health Secretary of the state, told doctors that 125 police personnel will be deployed inside NRS Hospital to ensure their safety.
About the NRS violence incident, Mamata said adequate measures have been taken and five people were arrested.
PR teams will speak to patients' families, not doctors: Mamata
Mamata suggested the setting up of Public Relations teams in all state-run hospitals to ensure communication isn't hampered. These teams will be tasked with updating patients' families about their condition. This will reduce risk and doctors won't be subject to any unruly behavior, she underscored.
- Doctors In West Bengal
- Doctors Protest
- Doctors Strike
- Doctors Strike In Bengal
- Doctors Strike In West Bengal
- Mamata Banerjee
- Mamata Banerjee And Doctors
- West Bengal
- West Bengal Doctors Attack
- West Bengal Doctors Strike News
- West Bengal Strike Doctors
- Chandrima Bhattacharya
- Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee
- Cooch Behar
- Indian Medical Association
- MoS Chandrima Bhattacharya
- NRS Hospital
- Public Relations
- Rajiv Sinha