Earlier trying to be firm on the issue of doctors' transfers in public interest, the Punjab government has taken a U-turn on the issue.
Health minister Madan Mohan Mittal has started rolling back the transfer of specialist doctors in some cases.
Mittal told HT on Saturday that he had ordered rolling back transfer of 62 doctors so far. He said only genuine cases had been considered. "These transfers were rolled back due to genuine reasons, but not all transfers will be rolled back," Mittal said.
"We have considered only those cases which had genuine problems, like doctors suffering from serious health problems or couples getting posted in different districts," he said.
When asked as to why the government took a U-turn on the issue, Mittal said the decision was taken after people approached him with their genuine problems. He said he had made it clear from the beginning that he was open to considering genuine cases. Mittal asked the doctors to approach him if they had problems with the recent transfers. He said some of these cases were those of physically challenged or those with chronic health problems.
After the recent transfers, the health department was trying to be firm saying no transfers would be rolled back. It was perhaps for the first time that even those with influence were also not spared while ordering transfers.
Meanwhile, Mittal appealed to the doctors not to go on strike.
He said, "The proposed strike by doctors is unjustified. I am here to address their grievances. If they have any genuine problem, they should approach me. The services of doctors are essential to people. I appeal to them not to go on strike."
The PCMS Doctors Association has announced to go on a two-day strike from Monday in protest against the mass transfer.
The health department had transferred 523 specialist doctors on Tuesday.