The strike by resident doctors in Maharashtra has entered its third day on 21 March. Around 4,000 doctors in the state have sat down to protest the lack of security at hospitals in the wake of a spate of attacks against medical professionals.
Maharashtra has witnessed four separate cases of doctors being attacked in the last week alone. Assault cases were lodged after doctors were attacked in Nashik, Dhule, Sion and Aurangabad.
While emergency services at the hospitals in question are operational, patients have complained that they are being deprived of treatment as the doctors refuse to report to work.
The issue also came up before the Bombay High Court, with an activist filing a petition seeking a direction to the doctors to report to work immediately.
Mumbai Mayor Vishwanath Mahadeshwar appealed to the doctors to call off their strike. He told PTI:
Most of the doctors’ demands have been met by the civic administration, while thousands of patients have been left in the lurch at present.
"The civic administration was doing every thing to ensure doctors' safety and therefore doctors must cancel their leave in the larger interest of society," he said, adding if the resident doctors didn't resume duty, then the law will take its own course.
We have accepted their two demands immediately – allowing only two relatives of a patient to go inside, and setting up alarm bell system. However, their third demand of setting up vigilance committee needs some time to fulfil.
The newly-elected Mayor also said that the corporation was going to hire 700 guards for security at hospitals.
Video Editor: Vivek Gupta