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IMA-Mumbai threatens strike; demands action against police

Written by: Staff

Mumbai, May 14 (UNI) Indian Medical Association (IMA) today warned that it will be forced to go on a ''medical bandh'' in Mumbai if its demand for resignation or dismissal of Mumbai police Commissioner A N Roy and suspension and arrest of police personnel involved in yesterday's lathi charge, are not met.

In a statement here, Dr Sunita Kshirsagar, President of the Mumbai branch of IMA, said the state Government's decision for an inquiry into the lathi charge by the police would be biased and meaningless. The IMA demanded that the inquiry be conducted by a judicial Magistrate and report be submitted within 48 hours.

She said if the authorities fail to give a positive response, the IMA will have no option but to escalate the agitation and go on a medical bandh.

''Under the current circumstances, it will be next to impossible for any doctor in Mumbai to help police personnel in any medical situation,'' she added.

Dr Kshirsagar said the IMA urges President A P J Abdul Kalam, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil, Union Health Minister A Ramdoss, Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh and Medical Education Minister Dilip Walse-Patil to intervene urgently in the matter and come out with a positive statement in the next 24 hours and also take appropriate action against ''Assasination of Humanity''.

IMA members will meet at Azad Maidan tommorrow at 1400 hrs to take out a protest march and submit a memorandum to the Chief Minister. ''We want that the reservation issue be solved through dialogue'', she added.

IMA-Mumbai has strongly condemned the ''unprecedented, unprovoked and brutal assault by the Mumbai police on the peacefully protesting doctors and students.'' ''It is a matter of grave concern that the incident happened in broad daylight and in front of the media against a group of students, using their democratic right of peaceful protest. ''We shudder to think how the police would behave with the common man. We are also alarmed and disturbed by the blantantly false and irresponsible statements by the police commissioner, thus misleading the society,'' the statement added.

It further appealed to the public to condemn the police action and support the medical fraternity in their agitation against the reservation policy.

Meanwhile, the Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD) has decided to remain neutral on the issue of reservation. A MARD spokesman said the association was extending support to the agitation by IMA against the police brutality. ''We are not going on strike. If their agitation escalates, the MARD general body would decide on its future course of action,'' the spokesman added.


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