Kolkata, June 14: The doctors' strike that started in Kolkata earlier this week has intensified on Friday with medicos across the country joining the stir. Seeking apology from West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, several doctors at various hospitals in the state tendered their resignation to express solidarity with their protesting colleagues. The Central government also blamed Mamata Banerjee for the doctors' strike.
As many as 16 doctors of RG Kar hospital in Kolkata tendered their resignation, stating, "In response to the prevailing situation as we are unable to provide service, we would like to resign from our duty." Two doctors of North Bengal Medical College & Hospital in Darjeeling also resigned over the violence against doctors in the state, news agency ANI reported. Doctors' Strike: Patients Suffer As Nationwide Agitation Cripples Medical Services Across India.
The chief minister on Thursday gave an ultimatum to protesting doctors to resume work and dubbed the entire protest a conspiracy by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). "If they do not resume work, we will take action after 2 p.m. There is the Essential Services (Maintenance) Act and it is the Supreme Court's order that doctors cannot go on strike," Banerjee said after visiting the Seth Sukhlal Karnani Memorial Hospital.
"In between all the disruptions, the BJP has brought the Hindu-Muslim issue. I see the CPI-M (Communist Party of India-Marxist) is also fanning the trouble here. I am shocked to see the friendship between the CPI-M and BJP," the Trinamool Congress chief added. Doctors' Strike Extends Across India From West Bengal; Check List Of Medical Services Available And Shut Today.
Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan appealed to Mamata Banerjee to not make this an issue of prestige. "I appeal with folded hands to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to not make this an issue of prestige. Despite getting beaten so badly, doctors only asked her to provide them adequate security and take action against all those behind this as per the law. But, she didn’t do this and gave an ultimatum to the doctors after which doctors of West Bengal and across the country got angry and went on strike," he told ANI.
If the Chief Minister changes her attitude, then patients will not suffer across India. Today, I will write a letter to Mamata Banerjee. I will also try to talk to her. I would like to assure all doctors that the government is committed to ensuring their safety. I appeal to doctors to hold symbolic protests only and continue to carry out their duties," Harsh Vardhan added.