A doctor at a Covid care centre (CCC) in Assam was thrashed by a mob on Tuesday after a Covid-19 positive patient died during treatment. The assault, recorded presumably on a mobile phone, triggered a sharp protest from doctors and others.
Chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma called it a barbaric attack and ordered the Assam police to arrest the culprits.
“Such barbaric attacks on our frontline workers won’t be tolerated by our administration,” Himanta Biswa Sarma tweeted. GP Singh, special director general of police, responded to the chief minister, saying three people had already been arrested.
Dr Seuj Kumar Senapati, who was posted at Udali CCC in Hojai district of central Assam was attacked by nearly 20 relatives of the patient including women.
A video of the incident in which a group of persons is seen hitting the doctor with broom, utensils and kicking him while he lay on the ground has gone viral on social media platforms. Though a policeman is seen in the video, he’s not seen trying to stop the attack.
According to a letter issued by the Hojai unit of Indian Medical Association (IMA) to the deputy commissioner of the district, the patient was admitted on Tuesday at 11am and died three hours later at 2pm.
The letter said the mob damaged the building and also ransacked instruments at the CCC besides “brutally assaulting” the doctor.
The IMA unit said unless all the culprits involved in the attack are arrested by 7am on Wednesday, all doctors of Hojai would boycott all out-patient duty (OPD) services.
It also asked the government to provide all hospitals and CCCs with security cover, CCTV cameras and round the clock electricity.
“Instructions have been given to superintendent of police Hojai to arrest all persons involved in the assault,” GP Singh tweeted.