Asian doctor accused of racial discrimination

  • Indo-Asian News Service, PTI, London
  • |
  • Updated: Oct 23, 2003 19:15 IST

A Birmingham-based Asian doctor has been accused of racism because he banned asylum seekers from his practice.

Vijayakar Abrol, a general practitioner, has been reported to the General Medical Council by Liberal Democrats health spokesman Evan Harris following allegations of race discrimination.

The controversy began in November 2002 when Abrol raised a storm of protest when he put up a notice on the window of his practice in Edgbaston.

It read: "No asylum seekers please. My list is full. I cannot take on any asylum seekers until the Heath Authority or Primary Care Trust (PCT) gives me extra resources which I need to look after you."

Abrol's move divided doctors across Britain, with many supporting him for trying to deal with problems caused by large numbers of asylum seekers seeking medical help.

Harris has demanded that the GMC discipline Abrol, and has also sought his expulsion from the Liberal Democrats party. Harris is a Liberal Democrat MP from Oxford West and Abingdon.

Abrol denies charges of racism.

"I have received a lot of support from other doctors in Birmingham for my policy on asylum seekers. But I am not a racist and an unprofessional.

"About 60 per cent of my patients are from different cultures and backgrounds," he told the local media.

Abrol said he would fight any attempts by Harris to expel him from the Liberal Democrats party.

"I am not going to let the comments of one man affect my feelings for a party to which I have belonged for 20 years," Abrol added.


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