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Bombay High Court likens striking doctors to factory workers

Court remarked that the resident doctors not medical professionals entrusted with the task of saving human lives.

Published: 22nd March 2017 01:10 AM  |   Last Updated: 22nd March 2017 11:06 AM   |  A+A-

MUMBAI: Slamming government doctors who have been on strike for their irresponsible behaviour, the Bombay High Court on Tuesday remarked that resident doctors are fit only to be “ordinary factory
workers” and not medical professionals entrusted with the task of saving human lives. Tuesday was the second day of the sudden agitation of the resident doctors in Maharashtra wherein more than 4,000
resident doctors in government hospitals stayed away from work.

The agitation came after a couple of incidents last week wherein resident doctors from government hospitals in Dhule and Sion in Mumbai were beaten up by relatives of patients on suspicion of negligent
behaviour.

On Monday, it was said that the agitation was a token protest and the doctors would resume duties. But, on Tuesday they refused to resume work unless better security facilities are provided.

Against this backdrop, a Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice G S Kulkarni, which was hearing a public interest litigation filed by activist Afak Mandaviya, said, “If you
(doctors) do not want to work, then resign. You are not factory workers who resort to such protests. Shame on you. How can doctors behave in such a manner?”

The petitioner’s counsel, Datta Mane, said the Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors had last year assured the High Court that the doctors would not resort to agitations in the future.

“If that is the case, the protesting doctors have committed contempt. The hospitals concerned should initiate action against them,” the court said. However, the agitation appeared to have fizzled out by late evening.

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