Gujarat Essential Services (Maintenance) Act against the striking medical practitioners


Ahmedabad/Vadodara: With health services in government hospitals taking a hit from the resident doctors' strike across the state, the Gujarat government on Sunday invoked provisions of Gujarat Essential Services (Maintenance) Act against the striking medical practitioners. However, the striking doctors said they will continue the strike.

While State Health Commissioner Dr Amarjit Singh confirmed that ESMA has been invoked against agitating doctors, an official statement warned the doctors that defiance would result in fines and imprisonment.


The statement said the decision to invoke the Act was taken at a high-level in larger public interest. Those trying to disrupt the smooth running of health and medical services would face stringent action, the statement said.


It said the government was sincerely trying to help solve the problems of the doctors and had already appointed a high-level committee in June to address the issue of stipends.


The state government has already issued orders to medicos to vacate hostel premises in places like Vadodara, Surat, Bhavnagar, Jamnagar, Rajkot besides Cancer Hospital and Civil Hospital in Ahmedabad.


Meanwhile, the Gujarat Association of Resident Doctors (GARD) has decided to run parallel OPDs from Monday at Civil Hospitals between 9 am and 1 pm.


They will carry out public treatment free of cost to patients to avoid hardship to those coming to the hospital. GARD core committee member Dr Vivek Patel said this kind of action would not help solve the matters. "We are going to continue with the strike and were anticipating such measures for which are prepared to face," he said.


Express News Service, Jul 27, 2009