LAHORE - Atmosphere of fear and gloom prevailed at Punjab Institute of Cardiology on Thursday, a day after lawyers ransacked the leading cardiac facility.

Though the staff cleared broken windowpanes and debris, healthcare service delivery could not be restored despite deployment of Rangers.

The PIC management has released initial report of damage. Medical Superintendent PIC has released initial report that mentioned damage to two walk through gates, window panes outside and inside the building, computer monitors, doors of offices, 10 cardiac monitors, four echo machines, three ventilators, ceiling and plant pots. The report also mentioned damage to 16 vehicles in the parking lot. As per the insiders, the damage is estimated at Rs70 million.

Grand Health Alliance (GHA) and Young Doctors Association (YDA) have announced three day mourning. Doctors and allied health staff will perform duties while wearing black ribbons on arms.  Healthcare providers and civil society members will arrange candle vigil in the memory of victims.

Medics bodies will also arrange demonstrations to protest against lawyers involved in attack on the PIC.

Addressing a meeting at PIC, Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid said the government would provide financial assistance.

She reiterated her support to the doctors’ community and strongly condemned the vandalism at the PIC. The attacking lawyers have challenged the writ of the government by stopping the treatment of patients. All the criminals involved in attack on the PIC will be brought to justice, she added. “Even ministers were victim of torture. We are standing with the medical community. Doctors and patients will be provided complete protection in the government hospitals,” she concluded.

Academic Council of Lahore General Hospital has condemned the incident. Principal PGMI and Ameer Ud din Medical College Prof Al-fareed Zafar chaired the meeting that demanded taking the culprits to task.

Executive director PINS Prof Khalid Mehmood said that those involved in hooliganism have been fully exposed by cameras and now law should take way to give maximum punishment.

Progressive Group, a representative platform of industrialists and traders, said that this episode hints at increasing intolerance in the society.

In a joint statement issued here on Thursday, Progressive Group’s President Khalid Usman, Vice President Muhammad Arshad Chaudhry and Deputy Secretary Muhammad Ejaz Tanveer said that the rulers should pay attention towards the causes leading to increasing intolerance among the educated segments of the society. They said that Wednesday’s incident was very shameful and brought a bad name to the country. They urged the government to look that a rally started its journey from Aiwan-e-Adal and marched up to the hospital but no law enforcing or intelligence agency could get a hint of it so as to take measures. The Government should also take notice of ineptness of the police department which first reached late at the spot and later allegedly tortured those who were there to pacify the situation.