Rawalpindi-Young Doctors Association and other paramedical staff at Benazir Bhutto Hospital (BBH) yesterday went on strike while staying away from OPD services to protest the firing incident in emergency department.

They also sought resignations of medical superintendent and principal Rawalpindi Medical College. However, the doctors assumed emergency services on humanitarian ground. The protestors blocked Murree Road for all kinds of traffic and demanded of the government to enhance security in the hospital. 

According to details, the doctors and paramedics faced trauma and shock on Friday evening when two armed groups clashed in the emergency ward, leading to bullet injuries to a ward master as there is no police security in the hospital situated on Murree Road.

The YDA following the incident carried out a protest demonstration on Benazir Bhutto Road and blocked the road for about two hours. The doctors protested against insufficient security at BBH and failure of the hospital administration to provide security to medical practitioners in public hospitals.

Medical services at the emergency ward and the operation theatre at BBH remained suspended for whole night as the supporters of two groups remained present outside the emergency building till late at night.

Talking to The Nation, Joint Secretary YDA Dr Bilal said that he was present in the emergency when the firing incident took place. He said that the doctors have put four demands related to the security issues during their meeting with BBH Medical Superintendent Dr Asif Qadir Mir and Principal Rawalpindi Medical College Dr Muhammad Umer who have assured them to provide 15 police guards and 18 security guards of a private security company at the emergency services centre. He said that they had also demanded for setting up a security committee having members from YDA, area police and hospital administration to prepare SOP for security of medical practitioners. He also noted that higher authorities needed to take action against those who failed to provide security at the trauma centre of BBH.

Meanwhile, the city experienced worst traffic jam throughout the day. A bumper to bumper traffic jam could be witnessed on all the roads with people protesting against inefficiency of traffic police. The worst traffic jam was on the roads including Murree Road, Raja Bazaar, Commercial Market, 6th Road, 7th Road, Committee Chowk, Sadiqabad, Chandni Chowk, Moti Mehal, Saddar, Kashmir Road and Rashid Minhas Road.

On the other hand, police lodged two separate cases against the two groups involved in armed clash first at Sadiqabad and then at the hospital. 

CPO Israr Ahmed Khan Abbasi said on Friday evening that an armed clash took place between two groups - Raja Imran and Shahbaz groups - at Service Road in Sadiqabad. He said a woman was killed while another man was injured in clash. Later the second group stormed into the hospital and again opened fire, injuring two people. He said police arrested 12 persons and recovered a pistol from one of the accused. He said cases were registered on charges of murder and terrorism against the accused.