Punjab assembly adopts Bill to check violence against doctors

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Chandigarh, Sep 5 (UNI) The Punjab Assembly today adopted by voice vote the Punjab Protection of Medicare Service Persons and Medicare Service Institutions (Prevention of Violence and Damage to Property) Bill 2008 for checking incidents of violence against the medical fraternity, which occur after the death of patients.

The Bill provides for punishment to offenders who indulge in violence against medicare service persons or damage property in medical service institutions, both government and private.

Moving the Bill in the House on the second day of the monsoon session, Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal expressed concern over the increasing incidents of violence against doctors, nurses, paramedics and others in this field. He also pointed to the damage of hospital property.

"Such incidents often hamper medicare services and so there is a need to check these", he told the House after tabling the Bill.

According to the Bill, an offence committed against a doctor or a paramedic or a medical institution would be non bailable and would be heard by a Judicial Magistrate, first class. The punishment in such offences could be imprisonment of upto one year or more or fine of upto Rs 50,000 or both.

Besides, doctors, nurses and other paramedics, this Bill also covers medical and nursing students.

The Bill was brought in the House as the Government had given an assurance to the Indian Medical Association,to bring this legislation on the pattern of Andhra Pradesh to safeguard the interests of the medical fraternity.

The assembly also passed the Indian Penal Code (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2008 and Criminal Procedure Code (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2008.

The two Bills were tabled by the Chief Minister and adopted by voice vote.

UNI HS MMS1741

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