The Lahore police briefly fired tear gas at young doctors protesting against a medical licensing examination (NLE) Sunday morning. Resultantly two protesters fainted during the clash with the police.
More than 300 protesters gathered near the Barkat Market and tried to break into the examination centre. A heavy contingent of police arrived at the site and set up barricades and barbwires to keep off the doctors.
The demonstrators held placards in their hands and demanded that the compulsion of the National Licensing Exam should be revoked. “We won’t end the protest unless the Ministry of Health responds to our demands,” a student said.
This is the third time young doctors have taken to the streets in Lahore. In a protest on Friday, they announced a boycott of OPDs.
The Punjab government spokesperson Usman Basra told a private Tv channel that this is not the first time young doctors have protested.
“Dr Yasmin Rashid recently talked to them and we have always welcomed talks with them, but we can’t let a bunch of students hold the state hostage.”
“We are ready. Tell us your demands, talk to us, he said, adding that a committee of young doctors has been constituted as well.
The Pakistan Medical Commission has announced that in order to practice in Pakistan, doctors will have to take a licensing exam after completing 5 years of education.
MBBS examiners from abroad are to be tested this year. On the other hand, young doctors claim the additional examination was unfair as they had already passed the same exam to obtain their MBBS degrees.