Condemning the increasing attacks on doctors in India, an influential body of Indian-American physicians has sought intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to put an end to violence against medical professionals. “We urge the government of India to make all the efforts possible and put an end to this ongoing violence against medical professionals and enable them to continue to serve the country with dignity, pride and security,” Ajay Lodha president of American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) said in a letter to the Prime Minister.
“Physicians in India feel threatened and their lives are in danger. Some hospital administrators have begun to hire bouncers, whose imposing presence deters patients’ relatives from aggressive behaviour,” he said yesterday.
“The medical fraternity in several states is on strike due to the recent incidents of violence against doctors. This is not good for the people committed to care and also is not benefiting the doctors,” Lodha said.
AAPI is an umbrella organisation of Indian-American doctors and has nearly 90 local chapters.
“Violence against doctors has reached such an extreme in India that the medical staff is afraid to come to work and they need a police presence in the hospitals where they work,” Lodha said.
About 49 doctors have been attacked in the state of Maharashtra alone since 2015, he said.
“The violence against physicians in India will put a dent in the area where we have been growing rapidly as world leaders and will cause irrevocable damage to the health industry in India and our image will be tarnished for ever,” he said.