Bengaluru follows in Kolkata’s footsteps
Karnataka Rakshana Vedike is a pro-Kannada outfit. Earlier it has made national headlines by defacing English and Hindi signages in Bengaluru. Now it has grabbed attention by allegedly assaulting a female postgraduate medico doctor for not speaking Kannada, at Minto Eye Hospital housed in the Bangalore Medical College Research Institute (BMCRI) campus. Services at the institute have been disrupted, with junior doctors protesting the assault.
Unfortunately, vigilante assaults on doctors and other healthcare professionals have become a trend in our society. Recall how in June this year, a young intern of Nil Ratan Sircar Medical College and Hospital in Kolkata suffered skull damage after a brutal attack. That incident triggered disquiet among the medical fraternity across India.
Part of the problem is general scarcity of health infrastructure, with government data showing that India’s doctor-population ratio is an abysmal1:1472 compared to WHO’s minimum norm of 1:1000. Increasing the supply of medical professionals needs meaningful policy changes, including upgrading India’s 600 district hospitals into teaching hospitals.
But the other problem is social. Look no further than yesterday in Delhi, when lawyers’ attacked police in flagrant defiance of law even as opposition leader Vijay Goel shamelessly violated the odd-even scheme in the middle of an airpocalypse. Every tribe seems to be led by rule-breakers. That’s their badge of grade A membership, not acting in common cause with fellow tribes. The vast masses who do follow the rules and are invested in creating a rules-based ecosystem, they become collateral damage. And all this rule-breaking is so self-defeating.
For example attacking doctors will not improve healthcare, only worsen it. Even forcing Kannada upon all the migrants in Bengaluru is not in the language’s best interests, if it scares them away. The metro’s dynamism comes from its cosmopolitanism. If narrow parochialisms turn India into many fragmented islands, nobody will be the better for it, except our ill-wishers.
DISCLAIMER : Views expressed above are the author’s own.