Over 120 striking doctors resign in Bengal

With the adamant attitude being continued by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee towards the four-day strike by junior doctors at 13 state-run medical colleges and hospitals in the state, the situation further  worsened today as 97 doctors, including senior doctors and professors, from the R.G. Kar Medical College and Hospital, tendered mass resignation and came out of the healthcare unit, leaving hundreds of patients admitted unattended.

The development came a day after chief minister Mamata Banerjee visited SSKM Hospital, where she warned the striking junior doctors of strict action if they did not resume work within the deadline that she had set.

“It was a unanimous decision to tender our resignation following our chief minister’s indifferent attitude towards law and order situation in healthcare services. She made us a scapegoat in front of the people. We are demanding her unconditional apology,’’ said a senior doctor of the R.G. Kar Hospital who tendered his resignation, in solidarity with the protesting junior doctors at NRS.

Meanwhile,  the Indian Medical Association (IMA) has announced a nationwide doctors’ strike on 17 June and said that no essential medical services should be provided and that non-violent protests would continue.

Meanwhile, Mamata Banerjee fired a fresh salvo at ‘outsiders’. She said, “We have to bring Bangla forward. When I go to Bihar, UP, Punjab, I speak in their language, if you are in Bengal you have to speak Bangla. I will not tolerate criminals who stay in Bengal and roam around on bikes.”

Alleging that the BJP had pitted Hindus against Muslims, Mamata’s pitch for bringing ‘Bangla’ forward comes at a time that the healthcare system stands crippled in the state. While the strike by junior doctors has continued, other states have also joined in the protest, putting the agitation firmly on the national stage.

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