Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Doctors protest harassment by cops

Statesman News Service
KOLKATA, 4 MAY: Doctors and human rights activists belonging to various organisations will launch a statewide campaign against the alleged harassment of medical practitioners by police in the Maoists dominated districts.
The move comes after the police raided the residence of a doctor at Asansol in Burdwan for allegedly treating some Maoists who got injured in gun battle with the cops in Junglemahal during the past few months.
A section of doctors alleged that several of their colleagues in trouble-torn Junglemahal had to stop practicing fearing arrest for sheltering the Maoists. Some clinics in these three districts were closed down after doctors attached to these faced “harassment” in the hands of police, it was alleged.
"It is a matter of great concern that some medical practitioners in different areas of Midnapore West, Bankura and Bardhamman have been harassed by the police and administration while some others have faced imprisonment,” said Dr Bijon Bera, secretary of the Medical Service Centre, an organisation of medical practitioners.
“In these districts many doctors and health workers have been manhandled by the police on the plea that they had treated some patients who had links with members of the CPI (Maoist). As per medical ethics of our country as also international norms, a doctor has to treat all patients without any prejudice regarding their caste, creed or political association,” Dr Debashis Dutta, a member of another organisation, Peoples Health, said.
In protest against the harassment by the police and administration, the organisations demand that the state government take immediate action to stop such crackdown and punish the cops who have committed atrocities on doctors. According to International Covenant, a lifer and even a war prisoner have the right to have medical treatment. Doctors’ associations have also alleged that family members of some doctors have faced harassment by the police in Junglemahal.
Source: The Statesman 5 May 2010
http://www.thestatesman.net/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=327028&catid=72