'Gods in white coats': Modi condemns doctors' harassment over coronavirus

Prime Minister Narendra Modi gestures during his address to the nation on coronavirus pandemic in New Delhi, Thursday, March 19, 2020. Photo: PTI
Doctors treating coronavirus patients are "gods in white coats” and their harassment is shameful, said Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday, commenting on reports that medical professionals are being ostracised and evicted.

"I am pained," said Modi in a video conference call with people in Varanasi, his constituency in Uttar Pradesh. He said the Home Ministry has been directed to take action against those who are not cooperating with doctors, nurses and other professionals ''serving us in this critical time".

He said the war in Mahabharata epic lasted for 18 days but the fight against coronavirus will go on for 21 days, referring to the tree-week lockdown in India.

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, who was speaking at a press conference in his city, said the police will act against landlords evicting doctors and other professianals for fears that they are suspectible to the disease. 
The Resident Doctors' Association (RDA) of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in Delhi pleaded Home Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday to prevent the eviction of healthcare professionals by landlords in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Doctors across the country have been "stranded on the roads with all their luggage", said the RDA.

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