Edited by Manasi Nene
Today, the Indian Medical Association (IMA) is holding a nationwide protest, to demand a central law to protect doctors against the backdrop of increasing violence against them. According to the national president, Dr J.A. Jayalal, over 350,000 doctors are expected to participate. The organisation asked all its State and local branches across the country to wear black badges, masks, ribbons, shirts and run awareness campaign against such violence, to mark the day.
“Currently 21 states have their local laws, but what we need is a strong central law to protect doctors from violence – In one instance, 11 years have passed and a doctor in Nashik has died of head injury, but the person is still not caught, there was a change introduced in Epidemics Act due to Covid-19, but even then about 300 small instances of violence were reported in 2020 alone- Doctors are laying their lives on the line — 750 had died in 2020 and about 700 more have died during the second wave” said the IMA in a statement.
In light of this, we spoke to four young doctors—Dr Ann Jacob, Dr Meghna Rai, Dr Ashish Nathaniel and Dr Nandana Nair—to understand how instances of violence affect their ability and conviction to serve and save human lives.