Gujarat doctors sit on hunger strike, say no to 'mixopathy'

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Ahmedabad, Feb 1 (PTI) Doctors in Gujarat started a relay hunger strike on Monday as part of a nationwide protest called by the IMA against the Centre's decision to allow Ayurvedic physicians to perform certain types of surgeries.

Around 20 doctors associated with the Indian Medical Association's (IMA) Gujarat branch sat on a day-long hunger strike outside the Ahmedabad Medical Association hall on Ashram Road here.

Nearly 30,000 doctors are associated with the IMA's state branch.

IMA-Gujarat secretary Dr Kamlesh Saini said modern medicine is different from Ayurveda, and the government must not promote the 'practice of mixopathy' which allows Ayurvedic doctors to perform surgeries after a three-year course.

As directed by the IMA headquarters, the relay hunger strike would take place in different cities of Gujarat between February 1 and February 14, he said.

'To register our protest against 'mixopathy', the Gujarat branch of the IMA has launched its relay hunger strike with 20 doctors on Monday. Tomorrow, another batch will take over,' he said.

The hunger strike will continue in Ahmedabad till February 4, following which similar protests would be organised in other cities like Vadodara and Surat till February 14, he said.

'We demand withdrawal of the Central Council of Indian Medicine's (CCIM) notification and the NITI Aayog committee for integration (of all medicine systems),' Saini said.

This is the second major nation-wide protest called by the IMA in recent times against the Centre's decision to allow post-graduate Ayurvedic physicians to perform certain types of surgeries after training.

The IMA headquarters has termed this second round of protest as 'the freedom struggle of modern medicine'.

In December 2020, the IMA gave a call for withdrawal of all non-essential and non-COVID-19 services for 12 hours against the CCIM's decision to allow Ayurvedic doctors to conduct certain surgical procedures after completion of their three-year PG course, Saini said. PTI PJT PD GK GK