Govt 'no tolerance' for attacks on coronavirus medics, proposes tough law

The ordinance will be implemented after the President signs it. Photo: ANI
The government will bring an ordinance to protect "medical fraternity" from attacks and harassment during the coronavirus outbreak, said a senior minister on Wednesday. 

 
"While people across the nation salute the health workers and those in the field helping battle COVID-19, but there are few who are attacking them, thinking they are spreading the virus. There will be absolutely no tolerance to attacks on doctors and healthcare professionals," said environment minister Prakash Javadekar said after a cabinet meeting in Delhi.

The ordinance, which amends a more than 100-year old law, says an attack would be punished by a minimum imprisonment of 5 months and a maximum of 5 years. An attack will be investigated will in 30 days and a court decision will be ensured in a year.
"In case of grievous injuries, the accused can be sentenced from six months to seven years. They (accused) can be penalised from Rs one lakh to Rs 5 lakh,” said Javadekar
.
The ordinance will be implemented after the President signs it. “The message is clear. No attacks on health staff and doctors will be tolerated,” Javadekar said. The government had received several complaints of assaults on doctors and health workers.

The Indian Medical Association (IMA) cancelled its April 23 ‘Black Day’  protest after Home Minister Amit Shah met its leaders.



Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel