Srinagar, Jan 7: The PDP-BJP government made its presence felt when it for the first time took a step which has been widely welcomed by the people on the streets in Kashmir.
The government removed the Director of SKIMS and placed under suspension three senior doctors for violating the ban on private practice on Saturday after a sting operation by a private television.
“We had been listening for the past several years that there is a ban on private practice of the doctors. It is for the first time that action has been taken”, a cross-section of the people on streets said.
Habibullah Rather, a resident of frontier district of Kupwara, who was here in connection with a business trip, said “it is a welcome step”. The government should act like this and make government employees accountable.
He said there is a shortage of doctors in far-flung areas like Kupwara. The doctors posted there remain absent and doing private practice. We have to take our patients to Srinagar or Baramulla for treatment.
Welcoming the government action, Mohammad Akbar Khan, a resident of Pampore said the government should not stop taking action against those who do not serve the people faithfully.
“We have often observed that government to take action against few officers or doctors but left others. Government officers launch a campaign against profiteers on Eid eve but left them free for 11 months to loot the poor population”, Khan said.
Another citizen from Srinagar Ghulam Nabi said the action taken against doctors should serve as an eye-opener for others. “There should be fear among the government employees that they will attract punishment if they do not serve the people. The government should maintain a watch on the doctors and other officers so as they do their duties to the entire satisfaction of the people”, he said.
A doctor who does not want to be named said there is no choice of private practice in SKIMS as it is a non-practicing institute from the very inception.
“Private practice by SKIMS doctors was declared as a criminal offense by virtue of a criminal law (amendment) act of 2002,” he said.
He said some years back doctors were caught red-handed doing private practice by Vigilance Organization sleuths, but no action was taken.