Strike by doctors at GDC enters day 4, patients continue to suffer 

Srinagar: With the government acting as a mute spectator, the patient care has been hit at the Government Dental College & Hospital (GDC) Srinagar as the indefinite strike of Post-Graduate and Under-Graduate students entered into fourth day on Monday.

The students are demanding immediate suspension of Dr Muhammad Mushtaq who is heading the department of Orthodontics and is accused of allegedly torturing students physically as well as mentally.

Amid all this, the GDC administration is not acting to douse down the crisis, though it says that it has asked other consultants to take care of the patients, however so far, the crisis seem to be aggravating with every passing day.

As per estimate, on daily basis around 200-300 patients visit the hospital for consultation and other treatment, while many other are undergoing treatment in its in-patient Department (IPD), which is all lying defunct given the non availability of doctors to attend to the patients, said an official posted here.

While talking to ‘Kashmir Vision’, Principal GDC, Dr Reyaz Farooq said that they are doing whatever they can in order to deal with the situation.

“We have called other consultants to take care of the issues that have cropped up,” he said.

When asked about how was the administration going to do deal with the students who are on strike, he said that the termination of the concerned Head was not in his hands, “but I assure the students that they should resume their studies and we will see what can be done,” he said.

Asked what happened to the inquiry that was ordered by the administration, he said that the inquiry was inconclusive as it was not able to conclude anything.

“The inquiry couldn’t conclude anything and then I personally thought of sorting out the matter, which has not happened yet,” he said.

The students allege that in one of the many events the concerned Head of the Department slapped PG student in clinical working area in full view of patients, attendants, colleagues and the staff.

“Even after that, when we brought the matter into the notice of the administration no action, whatsoever was taken,” said Manjeet Thakur, one of the PG student at the department of Orthodontics. The students are saying that the administration was further ‘harassing’ them to join back their respective departments.

Pertinently, the striking students have threatened hunger strike from Thursday if their demands are not met. Major medico body, Doctors’ Association of Kashmir has also extended full support to the striking doctors.

The government seems to be giving a cold shoulder to the issue that GDC is facing as Minister for Health and Medical Education Bali Bhagat could not be contacted for his comments on the issue.

The Minister of State for Health & Medical Education, Asiea Naqash also did not respond to repeated calls from this reporter.



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