Doctors' stir intensifies in Madhya Pradesh

Bhopal: Intensifying an ongoing anti-reservation stir, some junior doctors shaved their heads, formed human chains and took out a candlelight rally Tuesday in Madhya Pradesh.
The agitation is expected to further intensify Wednesday with members of the Indian Medical Association (IMA) and engineering students here expected to join the protest against the central government’s proposal to reserve 27 percent seats in central universities and elite education institutions for the other backward classes (OBCs).
“Prayers were offered by protestors at the Gandhi Medical College for good sense to prevail upon (Human Resource Development Minister) Arjun Singh,” said Junior Doctors Association spokesman Piyush Vyas.
Singh is seen as the architect of the plan for 27 percent reservation for other backward classes in institutes of higher education.
Two junior doctors even got their heads shaved as a mark of protest against the proposed reservation while their colleagues formed a human chain.
Late Tuesday saw a candlelight procession by the protestors from the Gandhi Medical College, Bhopal, to the busiest Roshanpura crossing of the city.
The strike was being observed for the second consecutive day by all the five medical government colleges of the state – in Bhopal, Indore, Gwalior, Rewa and Jabalpur.
“We are getting encouraging responses from other associations of doctors and engineering students in government and private hospitals. They, too, may join us soon,” Ashutosh Dixit, a striking doctor, told IANS.
Health services in the state’s government hospitals remained crippled, causing a heavy rush for private practitioners.
“I am worried about the life of my wife who is pregnant and writhing in pain but there is no one to look after her,” said Kamal Singh, who had come from a nearby village to Hamidia hospital.

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