Outpatient services at private hospitals across Karnataka were disrupted on Friday following a protest called by the Indian Medical Association(IMA), Karnataka Chapter, to express solidarity with junior doctors in Bengaluru who have been agitating against an alleged assault by pro-Kannada activists.
IMA Karnataka chapter President Dr Annadani Meti said OPD services in member private nursing homes and hospitals would be closed for 24 hours from 6 am on Friday to 6 am on Saturday but emergency cases would be attended during the shutdown.
Meanwhile, 13 Karnataka Rakshana Vedike activists, who have been accused of assault, surrendered at VV Puram police station in Bengaluru.
The Karnataka department of health and family welfare issued a circular, saying all government hospitals would have to function on Friday. “No government medical and paramedical staff can avail a holiday on Friday,” the circular said.
Junior doctors and postgraduate students of Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute (BMCRI) are on strike from November 2 against alleged assault by members of Karnataka Rakshana Vedike, a pro-Kannada group, on a doctor at Minto Ophthalmic Hospital in Bengaluru.
#Karnataka: Doctors in Bengaluru sit on strike at Victoria hospital against alleged attack on a doctor of Minto Eye hospital by members of pro-Kannada organisation Karnataka Rakshana Vedike on 31st October. pic.twitter.com/IdzNtHo4Ua
— ANI (@ANI) November 8, 2019
On November 1, members of the Karnataka Rakshana Vedike (KRV) came to Minto hospital demanding compensation for a patient who lost his sight after a botched eye surgery in July this year. Later, members of the outfit allegedly began assaulting a female doctor because she could not speak in Kannada. The doctors are demanding the arrest of the pro-Kannada activists and give security to medics on duty.
Speaking to the Indianexpress.com, KRV President Narayana Gowda said, “Since the strike will affect the poor patents across the state, we have decided to surrender. As alleged by the doctors, we didn’t assault them and just went there to ask for the compensation to those who lost eyesight after the operation. 13 members have surrendered before the police today.”
On Thursday, junior doctors of Kempegowda Institute of Medical Sciences, Bowring & Lady Curzon Medical College and Research Institute, MS Ramaiah Medical College, Rajarajeshwari Medical College, BMCRI, Vydehi Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, and St John’s Medical College expressed solidarity by wearing black badges during duty.
On Friday evening, the Minto hospital doctors call off protest after KRV activists surrender before the police and doctors’ return to the hospital for duty.
Meanwhile, the activists who had surrendered before the police were produced before the 24th ACMM court have been granted bail.