Doctors in Assam were on a 24-hour strike today to protest the assault on an elderly doctor at a tea garden that led to his death, officials said. Emergency services have been kept out of the purview of the stir.
73-year-old Dr Deben Dutta had succumbed to his injuries after being assaulted by relatives of a tea garden worker who died while undergoing treatment at a hospital at Teok Tea Estate in Jorhat district on Saturday.
Responding to a call by the Assam unit of the Indian Medical Association, doctors at government and private hospitals as well as consultation chambers are staying away from work from 6 am but attending emergency services, they said.
Doctors, including junior medical practitioners, in six government medical college hospitals and civil hospitals, family referral units and primary health centres are providing services only in emergency and casualty departments, health department officials said.
The IMA has demanded that the government ensure exemplary punishment to the culprits and beef up security measures like installing surveillance cameras in all health establishments including those in tea gardens.
A total of 26 people have been taken into custody from Teok tea estate in connection with the doctor's killing.
Inspector General of Police (law and order) Deepak Kedia visited the tea estate to take stock of the situation.
Jorhat Deputy Commissioner Roshni Aparanji Korati had ordered a magisterial inquiry into the assault on Dutta, who was working in the tea garden hospital after his retirement without remuneration.
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