How the West Bengal doctors protests started and spread?

The doctors across the nation are protesting after the West Bengal Government and the state police failed to take action against people who assaulted an intern at the Nil Ratan Sircar Medical College and Hospital.

The incident occurred when a 75 year old patient died late Monday night due to alleged medical negligence, the relatives of the patient clashed with junior doctors. The assault against the intern doctor left him with a fractured skull, soon other junior doctors went on a strike demanding action against the violence on doctors and hospitals.

Eyewitness accounts say that the mob that attacked the NRS Medical College and Hospital had close to 200 odd people.

Friday, the fourth day into protests saw support from doctors working AIIMS Delhi and centres in Patna, Raipur, Rajasthan, Punjab. The protests would widely affect patients in critical medical such as the AIIMS and Safdarjung Hospitals.

On Thursday, the Chief Minister of West Bengal Mamata Banerjee branded the agitation as politically motivated by the CPI(M) and the BJP. She visited  SSKM Hospital on Thursday and threatened action if the doctors continued to protest. However, her threatening words did not mean much as her own nephew Abesh Banerjee, who is a student at Kolkata’s KPC Medical College Hospital  joined the doctors protest.

Meanwhile, most of the patients in these key metros were turned down. Hospitals are not treating anyone unless it’s an emergency. The Indian Medical Association (IMA) asked members of all its state branches to stage protests and wear black badges on Friday.

The 4-day doctors agitation has crippled the health system in Bengal and is slowly spreading to other states. It is to be seen now as to how much time would the Mamata Banerjee government take to book the culprits.

Source : Various