Indian Medical Association on Saturday issued a statement saying that it is “appalled to learn of intimidation tactics by Madhya Pradesh bureaucracy against junior doctors in the state, in view of their demands for bed reservation, workplace security and stipend hike”.
“IMA stands with them and demands that the state government look into their cause,” the statement added.
The medical association said that junior doctors of Madhya Pradesh have been for the past six months demanding for some genuine rights, including including a hike in stipends and free treatment for them and their families if they contract the deadly coronavirus infection and and Covid incentives at par with medical colleges in most other states.
“IMA HQ stands with the junior doctors of Madhya Pradesh and we demand that the state government look into their cause and respond to their genuine demands by engaging with them at the earliest,” IMA said in a statement.
IMA further accused the Madhya Pradesh government for their refusal to give written assurances and said that doctors have been forced to tender their resignations.
“They’ve been in frequent contact with the administration for the past six months and have received only verbal assurances rather than written commitments for their demands. As a last resort, they have been on strike for the previous 5 days as a result of the government’s refusal to give written assurances, but the state government has yet to take any steps to engage in meaningful dialogue with them. They have been forced to tender their resignations en masse,” it said.
The Madhya Pradesh Medical Science University (MPMSU) is using intimidation tactics, threatening to cancel their registrations and demanding that they pay a seat departure bond and quit their hostel rooms, the IMA claimed.
“One of the junior doctors had to witness his parents being harassed by the state bureaucracy,” the medical association claimed.
IMA has termed such events unforgivably heinous and said that at this time of the epidemic, such harassment of frontline workers who have been serving selflessly is unacceptably cruel.
“IMA (HQs) is appalled to learn of such events, which are unforgivably heinous. They are the same healthcare workers whose efforts were lauded by our Prime Minister. At this time of the epidemic, such harassment of frontline workers who have been serving selflessly is unacceptably cruel,” IMA added.
On Friday, over 3,000 resident doctors resigned in Madhya Pradesh demanding a written assurance of “what they were promised by the government.”
The resident doctors, protesting since May 31, had put forward five demands, namely an increase in the stipend by six per cent per year, and separate arrangements at hospitals to treat doctors and their families. They also demanded that for the resident doctors on Covid duty, an additional 10 per cent marks must be given during government appointments.
They further added that those on Covid duty must be exempted from the compulsory one-year bond of rural service.
On Thursday the High Court of Madhya Pradesh had declared the state-wide strike of junior resident doctors as illegal and had ordered them to resume duty within 24-hours.