KOLKATA: Junior doctors in West Bengal called-off their week-long strike after meeting with Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at the state Secretariat Nabanna on Monday afternoon. A formal announcement of the withdrawal of the strike will be made from the NRS Medical College and Hospital - the epicentre of the protest.
“We will go to NRS Hospital and Medical College and then announce our withdrawal. We are satisfied,” said the doctor's delegation.
Under pressure from several counters, Mamata Banerjee met the delegation of junior doctors, comprising of 31 representatives. Kolkata Police Commissioner Anuj Sharma, Chief Secretary Rajiv Sinha, West Bengal health secretary MoS Chandrima Bhattacharya, other state officials select and members of media were also present in the meeting.
After listening to the doctor's demands, Banerjee asked the police to appoint a nodal officer for the security of doctors at all government hospital in the state. “Will try to ensure that more than two people doesn't enter the emergency ward at a time to avoid the chaotic situation," said the Chief Minister.
She also directed the state official to ensure that the news of demise or any patient health update be communicated via proper channel “and in a most humble manner."
"See if a third person can be involved who can absorb the information from the doctors and pass it to patient party. That would minimise extra pressure on doctors as well," said Banerjee.
She further informed that no doctor has been booked by the state government.
Narrating their issues, the junior doctors told Banerjee, “We are often made to work in an environment of fear. Please ensure exemplary punishment against culprits, hence you are our guardian. We came here for discussion because we want a solution and end the deadlock and resume services. We believe that you have all good intentions if possible please take appropriate action against the unwanted incidents that have taken place."
The authorities present at the meeting assured that Kolkata Police will present also provide with the names of the accused persons.
"We had police forces posted in hospitals but now we need to streamline the entry of patient party in the hospital, hence we can minimise the chance of eventualities," says Kolkata Police Commissioner.
Junior doctors in West Bengal are on strike since June 11 after two of their colleagues were attacked and seriously injured allegedly by relatives of a patient who died at the NRS Medical College and Hospital in Kolkata.