QUETTA: The Balochistan chapter of the Pakistan Medical Association announced on Monday it would continue to boycott emergency services in government hospitals across the province despite police having opened the locked Casualty Department of the Civil Hospital.
Doctors in Balochistan have been on strike for several weeks in protest against non-recovery of specialist Dr Saeed Khan, who was kidnapped in Quetta on Oct 16.
Dr Sultan Tareen, president of the PMA’s Balochistan chapter, told newsmen that the government could open the casualty departments with the help of police but could not achieve the desired goal in the absence of senior doctors who were also on strike.
Three doctors, who were accompanied by police, opened the locks of the casualty department in the civil hospital on Monday evening and announced they would start treating patients.
Dr Tareen, who was earlier granted interim bail before arrest by Quetta sessions judge, presided over a meeting of the PMA’s general body in the civil hospital.
The association said that suspension, arrests, harassment or banning entry of suspended doctors in government hospitals would not force them to give up their lawful struggle for the recovery of the kidnapped doctor.
The meeting condemned harassment of doctors by the government and asked it to speed up efforts to recover Dr Saeed, instead of using state machinery and law-enforcement agencies for browbeating and threatening doctors.
The PMA unanimously decided that doctors would not resume work in emergency departments of government hospitals till the provincial government withdrew cases against them and take back suspension orders of doctors.
The meeting also decided to continue to boycott emergency services, outpatient departments (OPDs) and Operation Theatres (OT) in all government hospitals and private clinics across the province.