Crisis deepens in Bengal as 100 doctors in state hospitals submit resignations
Between Thursday and Friday afternoon, as many as 92 doctors -- professors, associate professors, assistant professors and medical officers -- wrote to the authorities expressing their desire to step down.Updated: Jun 14, 2019 15:31 IST
Hindustan Times, Kolkata
As many as 100 doctors in state-run hospitals in Bengal on Friday wrote to authorities expressing their desire to resign from service even as health services were severely affected as junior doctors continued their stir for the fourth day.
The junior doctors have been on strike since Tuesday in protest against the brutal assault on two colleagues in Nilratan Sarkar Medical College and Hospital on Monday night by family members of an octogenarian patient who passed away. Even an ultimatum by chief minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday to resume work or face action failed to bring the striking doctors back to the wards.
Between Thursday and Friday afternoon, as many as 92 doctors -- professors, associate professors, assistant professors and medical officers -- wrote to the authorities expressing their desire to step down.
The maximum number of such requests were from Kolkata’s RG Kar Medical College and Hospital where at least 60 doctors from general medicine, surgery, neurosurgery departments submitted their resignation to the director of medical education. On Thursday, they gathered at the campus, expressed support for the agitation of the junior doctors and demanded that the chief minister apologise for her statements against the agitators.
“At least 60 professors, associate and assistant professors have already wrote expressing their desire to resign. But the number is likely to increase,” said Debarati Bardhan, a doctor at the hospital.
There are reports that about 100 doctors may also resign from NRS Medical College and Hospital.
In North Bengal Medical College and Hospital(NBMCH)in Siliguri, the biggest healthcare unit in north Bengal, head of psychiatry Nirmal Bera and his colleague from the same department Uttam Majumdar wrote to the principal expressing their desire to resign. At least 12 doctors of the NBMCH medicine department also resigned on Friday afternoon.
“For the past few years, attacks on doctors have happened repeatedly. Instead of understanding our concern for lack of safety, the chief minister threatened us on Thursday,” said Bera.
On Thursday evening, Saibal Mukherjee, principal, and Saurabh Chattopadhyay, medical superintendent and vice principal of NRS Medical College and Hospital offered to resign, saying they have been unable to solve the ongoing problem.
On Thursday, as many as 18 doctors of College of Medicine & Sagore Dutta Hospital in North 24 Parganas submitted letters to the principal to step down from service.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has not only ruled out talks with the agitators, but also threatened to invoke Essential Services Maintenance Act against the doctors and eviction from hostels (if they did not work) and face punitive action. She has also alleged that they are falling prey to instigation by political parties.
First Published: Jun 14, 2019 15:29 IST