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Health Minister Azad asks striking doctors in Rajasthan to resume work

Udaipur/Jaipur, Mon, 26 Dec 2011 ANI

Udaipur/Jaipur, Dec 26 (ANI): Health and Family Welfare Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad has asked the agitating doctors of government hospitals to resume work as they continue to strike demanding parity in pay and allowances with their counterparts in the central medical services.


Stating that treating patients is the foremost responsibility of a doctor's profession, Azad said: "Keeping in mind that lives of thousands of people are in danger, if doctors are not in hospital and some may have even lost their lives till now, I would like to appeal that they should not imitate other institutions and should not go strike at the cost of the ailing people needing medicare. I think doctors should be the first ones to realise this glaring fact."


Meanwhile, Dr. Anurag Dhakar, a striking doctor at Jaipur's Sawai Man Singh Hospital, said that the government's stance and response shows that it does not want to resolve the deadlock.


"If government takes back the RESMA (Rajasthan Essential Services Maintenance Act) and releases all arrested doctors then we are all available for the treating patients," said Dr. Thakur.


"As far as demands of the doctors are concerned, if the Chief Minister calls a meeting of the concerned leaders of the doctors for a dialogue over their reasonable demands, then nobody has any problem, as doctors are committed to put in their heart and soul in treating the patients," he added.


Meanwhile, Shaheed Khan, a relation of a patient, lamented at the state of the patients following the doctors' strike.


"We are facing lot of problems due to strike as doctors are not ready to treat the patients nor any body is giving any medicines or injections. The condition is very bad over here. Many people have died till now and my patient is just lying on the bed and no medicines have been given to him. We are very much concerned," he said.


Medical services in Rajasthan remained badly affected on the sixth day of the strike by resident doctors, with over 51 patients dying across the state so far due to the agitation.


Around 3,500 doctors in the state have been off work since Wednesday demanding a pay hike in parity with the central services.


About 400 doctors have been arrested till now for violating the Rajasthan Essential Services Maintenance Act (RESMA) clamped by the state government.


The state's health department is negotiating with the striking doctors and are hopeful of arriving at a solution soon.


Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has already given direction to the health department to authorise private hospitals to treat patients who are suffering at approved rates during the ongoing strike. (ANI)


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