Rajasthan sacks 10 more doctors; strike continues

Rajasthan sacks 10 more doctors; strike continues Zeenews Bureau

Jaipur: Hardening its stand, the Rajasthan government late on Sunday sacked 10 doctors and two medical officers for taking part in the strike as the stalemate between agitating medicos and authorities continued.

With the doctors’ agitation entering sixth day today, the patients’ toll due to non availability of medical services in the state has risen to 53.

So far, 409 doctors have been arrested following the strike which began on December 21.

Last night, after reviewing the situation, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot ordered dismissal of 10 doctors and two chief medical and health officers, an official said.

The services of Yaduveer Singh Rathore, Acting CMHO Pali, and Dulichand, CMHO Jalore, and 10 medical officers in different parts of the state were terminated for being involved in the strike and causing huge inconvenience to patients, the official said.

Describing the doctors' strike as "unfortunate", the Chief Minister had earlier appealed to them to resume duty "in the interest of the society".

"The government is making all efforts to keep the situation under control and alternate arrangements have been made in view of the unfortunate strike," he said.

The medical crisis in the state which is causing hardships to the patients deepened on Friday after 5,000 medicos, who are on strike demanding pay hike and time-bound promotions, submitted their resignations.

All government doctors working in hospitals, dispensaries, primary health centres and resident doctors of all the six medical colleges in the state have been on strike.

Taking up cudgels for the agitating doctors, the Indian Medical Association yesterday criticised Rajasthan government's stand over the strike and demanded revocation of Rajasthan Essential Services Maintenance Act (RESMA) for medical services.

Demanding that doctors arrested under RESMA be freed immediately, Secretary of IMA Rajasthan S S Agrawal asked the government to invite the agitators for dialogue to "understand their grievances".

State Health Minister Duru Miyan said the government was already in talks with the agitating doctors and expressed hope that a consensus would be arrived at soon.

The government has so far suspended 40 doctors, official sources said.

Meanwhile, opposition leader Vasundhara Raje blamed the Gehlot government for the crisis.

"Dozens of people have died due to doctors' strike and the government is solely responsible for it," she said at a public function in Jhunjhunu.

(With PTI inputs)