Rajbiraj, November 23
Protesting police brutality at Rajbiraj-based Gajendra Narayan Singh Sagarmatha Zonal Hospital, all health services, except emergency, have been shut since yesterday. The disruption continued today as well in Saptari.
Emergency health services are being provided from a tent from today. Health workers halted services accusing security personnel of beating them black and blue during a clash between police and activists of United Madhesi Democratic Front in the hospital. UDMF cadres had reached the hospital premises for treatment of their supporters who were injured in an earlier clash.
Police personnel had beaten Dr Tek Narayan Mandal, assistant health workers Ram Kumar Yadav, Ashok Chaudhary, Rajaram Yadav, Subodh Mehata, Raj Kumar Diyali, lab technician Bishwonath Mandal and drug entrepreneur Abadhesh Yadav, among others, according to hospital source. Following the incident, irate health workers brought all health services, except emergency, to a grinding halt.
Meanwhile, a joint meeting of as many as 22 employee organisations affiliated to different associations condemned police brutality on the premises of the hospital.
Organising a press meet, they accused the police force of invading the residencies of doctors, health workers and other staffers. They also accused police personnel of vandalising doors, brutally attacking health workers, threatening and misbehaving with health workers.
They demanded that Saptari Nepal Police DSP and SP along with APF SP be suspended from their posts. Besides, they also demanded guarantee of security, free treatment of the injured and proper compensation to all victims.
They warned of halting health services, closure of all offices across the district and staging a sit-in at the zonal hospital until their demands were addressed, said Acting Medical Superintendent of the hospital Dr Deepa Yadav.
A version of this article appears in print on November 24, 2015 of The Himalayan Times.