26 doctors booked in Peshawar after clashes


Observer Report


Following violent clashes a day earlier in Peshawar at the Lady Reading Hospital during which 13 doctors were arrested, a case was registered by police on Saturday nominating 26 doctors.
The arrested doctors were shifted from Peshawar to Mardan Jail.
The case has been registered under Sections 148 (rioting, armed with deadly weapon), 149 (every member of unlawful assembly guilty of offence committed in prosecution of common object), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 188 (disobedience to order duty promulgated by public servant), 337 (shajjah), 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), 427 (mischief causing damage to the amount of fifty rupees), and 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation).
According to police, the protesting doctors “disrupted the peaceful hospital environment and engaged in stone-pelting of police officers”.
Due to the stone pelting, a lady constable, as well as a reporter were injured, said police. In all, 15 medical staff and eight policemen were wounded.
The Grand Health Alliance, a grouping of doctors, paramedics, nurses and other health staff, had staged a protest on Friday against the Regional and District Health Authorities (RDHA) Act, 2019 which they describe as “nothing short of privatisation of government hospitals”.
In an unprecedented move, the government had banned the gathering of five people and more on the LRH premises under Section 144 to avoid any disruption in patient facilitation for a period of 10 days.
In a press conference held Saturday, the doctors announced an extension in their ongoing boycott of OPDs and other services at government hospitals and private clinics, giving the government a deadline of October 1.

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