KP doctors' province-wide strike continues for second day

May 16, 2019

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Doctors in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa continue their province-wide protest for a second day. — DawnNewsTV
Doctors in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa continue their province-wide protest for a second day. — DawnNewsTV

Doctors in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) on Thursday continued for a second day their province-wide strike calling for the registration of a first information report (FIR) against provincial health minister Dr Hisham Inamullah Khan and his security guards for allegedly thrashing an assistant professor at the surgical ward.

On Tuesday, Dr Khan and assistant professor Dr Ziauddin Afridi traded heated words and physical blows at Khyber Teaching Hospital following a meeting chaired by Prof Nausherwan Burki, during which Dr Afridi allegedly threw eggs at Prof Burki and was subsequently removed from the conference by police.

The health minister's guards allegedly beat up the surgeon, who was then taken to the operating theatre for treatment of head and neck injuries.

An FIR was lodged against Dr Afridi and three others for throwing eggs at Dr Burki. However, no action was taken against Dr Khan. The health minister maintained that he had acted in "self defence".

In a press conference on Wednesday, Dr Hisham said he had gone to the hospital to apologise to Dr Burki and had confronted Dr Afridi for his actions. He alleged that Dr Afridi had a "sharp object" in his hands which prompted the health minister's guards to physically assault the KTH assistant professor.

Dr Afridi, on the other hand, alleged that Dr Hisham had used abusive language and ordered his guards to beat him up.

Meanwhile, the chief minister took notice and ordered an inquiry into the incident, and the hospital administration also banned Dr Afridi from entering Khyber Medical College.

The KP Doctors Council called a strike yesterday demanding the removal of Dr Khan from his post and the registration of an FIR against him.

Dr Alamgir, a member of the KPDC told DawnNewsTV that all out patient departments (OPDs) across KP and private clinics have been shut in protest against the health minister.

Doctors gathered at Lady Reading Hospital and began their protest demonstration, entering the OPD of the hospital and forcibly shutting its services down.

KP Information Minister Shaukat Yousafzai in a press conference today said that doctors should call off their protest as it is affecting citizens who are already in pain and told them to put forth their demands, if any.

A police source told DawnNewsTV that the medico-legal report presented to them was prepared by colleagues of the injured doctor. Police will decide whether or not an FIR should be registered once the authenticity of the medico-legal examination and its report is determined.