Doctors join BPKIHS protest‚ patients suffer

DHARAN: Doctors of BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences today joined the protest launched by hospital staff, nurses, technical officers and helpers, leaving hundreds of patients high and dry.

All except emergency department have been shut completely. Hundreds of patients from different parts of eastern Nepal and scores from Indian cities visiting the hospital returned home today after learning that all the wards were closed since the morning.

Hospital staff and nurses went on protest four days ago demanding that the hospital management pay them hiked salary from the fiscal year 2011/12. Hospital’s OPD, maternity ward, children ward, radiology and other departments have been closed. Admission was not given to anyone at surgery and medicine wards today.

The agitating staff said they were forced to intensify their agitation because the hospital management had tried to disrupt their peaceful protest yesterday. They had complained yesterday that some Tarun Dal activists had threatened them asking them to call off the protest and return to work. Doctors joined the protest from today after Dr Basanta Shah was manhandled. The doctors are demanding that the management provide them proper security. Doctors, nurses, staffers and helpers also shouted slogans demanding increased salary and security.

Dr Ajay Agrawal said the protest was inevitable after ‘goons were being hired to beat up doctors and threaten them’. Dr Agrawal warned that the doctors would not return to work until the management assured them security.

Following yesterday’s threat from Tarun Dal activists, security personnel have been deployed at the hospital. DSP Rajendra Bista said security forces were kept on high alert at the hospital to avoid any potential clash. Police kept a close eye on the hospital gate throughout the day today and those who were found suspicious by the security forces were not allowed to enter the hospital.

In-charge of the emergency department at the hospital Dr Gyanendra Malla said the ward was not closed on humanitarian grounds.THT

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