Govt has brought an ordinance : The central government on Wednesday has brought an ordinance to end violence against health workers carries imprisonment from 6 month to 7 years if anyone found guilty, ANI reported. Addressing a press conference, Union minister Prakash Javdekar today said the government would act “tough” against those who would attack doctors and frontline health workers.
He added the crimes against health workers, through the ordinance, had been made a “non-bailable offense”. Under the new law, investigation in such cases will be completed in time-bound manner. “Such crime will now be cognizable and non-bailable. Investigation will be done in 30 days. Accused can be sentenced from 3 months-5 years and penalised from Rs 50,000 up to Rs 2 lakh,” Javadekar said. In extremely violent cases, accused could get get six months to seven years in jail.
Javadekar said if damage was done to vehicles or clinics of healthcare workers, a compensation amounting to twice the market value of the damaged property would be charged from the accused. Govt has brought an ordinance to end violence against health workers today on April 22.
He also informed that health briefings would now be reduced to four days a week, while press releases and cabinet briefing would be held on alternate days. Javadekar said that it is unfortunate that the health workers who are trying to protect the country from the epidemic are facing attacks. “No incident of violence or harassment against them will be tolerated,” he said. “An ordinance has been brought in, it will be implemented after President’s sanction,” Javadekar added.
He said that the investigation in such cases will be done within 30 days and the final judgement will be delivered within a year. Javadekar said that ASHA workers who are working at par with other health workers will also be covered under the law.
This news comes after Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Wednesday (22 April) held an interaction with doctors and particularly with the Indian Medical Association (IMA) leading the IMA to withdraw it’s proposed protests scheduled against the assaults on 22 and 23 April. Sending a strong message against the attackers, Shah added that safety and dignity of doctors at their work place is “non-negotiable”.