Kolkata doctors' stir: Opposition attacks Mamata, asks for apology

Mamata Banerjee

Kolkata, June 16: Opposition parties of West Bengal on Saturday attacked chief minister Mamata Banerjee for "not being serious" about resolving the situation arising from the protests by junior doctors and asked her to apologise to them.

The BJP, the Congress and the CPM blamed Banerjee for the ongoing crisis in the state's health sector and accused her of being more interested in scoring political brownie points rather than diffusing the tension.

"From the very beginning she was adamant. It is due to her arrogance and ego that the situation has snowballed into such a crisis. Had she been serious about resolving it, she should have apologised and accepted all the demands of the doctors, which are justified," BJP national secretary Rahul Sinha said.

The agitating junior doctors have demanded an unconditional apology from the chief minister for her remarks at the SSKM Hospital on Thursday. She alleged that outsiders had entered medical colleges to create disturbance and that the agitation as a handiwork of the CPM and the BJP.

CPM central committee member Sujan Chakraborty too blamed Banerjee for the crisis and urged her to take action to resolve the impasse.

"Had she gone to the NRS Medical College and spoken to the doctors, the matter would have been resolved. But she made it a prestige issue. She should remember that the prestige of the state is bigger than that of her own," Chakraborty said.

The junior doctors have demanded that the chief minister come to the NRS Medical College and Hospital where two of their colleagues were assaulted and seriously injured on Monday night by relatives of a patient who died.

State Congress president Somen Mitra said Banerjee should stop threatening doctors.

"She has got it all wrong in her basics. From the very beginning she started threatening the doctors. She should remember that her politics of threat and intimidation will not work in all cases," Mitra said.

The chief minister on Saturday said her government has not invoked the ESMA even after five days of agitation by the junior doctors, and appealed to them to rejoin duties.

The agitators turned down her appeal saying there was no honest effort on her part to break the deadlock.

PTI

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