Kolkata: The ongoing protests in NRS Medical College in Kolkata saw a few interesting twists. Kolkata Mayor Firhad Hakim’s daughter Shabba Hakim and Trinamool Congress leader Kakali Ghosh Dastidar’s son Baidyanath Ghosh Dastidar showed solidarity with the protesting doctors. Another person who followed in their footsteps was Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s nephew, Abesh Banerjee.
Abesh, son of Mamata’s brother Kartick Banerjee, is her youngest nephew and a junior doctor in Kolkata’s KPC Medical College. He is also the president of his college’s students’ association. His decision to lead a march in supporting of the doctors protesting at NRS Hospital raised eyebrows. With a poster in hand, he was seen at the protest in his college on Thursday and Friday.
In a video posted on social media, Abesh was heard shouting slogans in favour of the agitating doctors across the state. One of the protesters marching along with him held a banner saying, “Stop violence against doctors, KPCMCH stands with NRS.”
Watch: Mamata Banerjee’s nephew leading a protest rally against the government. Dr. Abesh Banerjee who himself is a junior doctor with government run KPC hospital can be seen in a video protesting and showing solidarity with junior doctors of NRS @dna @ZeeNews @WIONews pic.twitter.com/21SyXlgMAI
— Pooja Mehta (@pooja_zeenews) June 13, 2019
Kartick Banerjee is one of the men who were given the responsibility of running the party’s ‘Jay Hind, Jay Bangla’ campaign to counter the BJP’s ‘Jai Shri Ram’ discourse in the state. Abesh’s mother is also a close aide of the chief minister. Even Abesh has been seen at the Kali Pooja function held in Mamata’s locality every year.
Both Kartick and Abesh were unavailable for comments.
Abesh’s protest video came at a time when the Kolkata mayor’s daughter Shabba took to Facebook to register her protest against the government and police inaction.
“For those who do not know doctors in government and most private hospitals are boycotting OPD but are still working in emergency. Unlike other professions we can’t just decide not to work because at the end of the day we have humanity. If there was a bus or taxi strike not one taxi driver or bus driver would provide you with any service no matter how dire the situation,” she wrote.
“For those saying “Ono Rugider ki dosh?” Please question the government as in why the police officers posted in government hospitals do little to nothing to protect doctors? Please question them that when 2 truckload of goon showed up, why wasn’t back up sent immediately? Please question why goons are still surrounding hospitals and beating up doctors? We have a right to peaceful protest. We have a right to safety at work. P.S. as a TMC supporter I am deeply ashamed at the inaction and the silence of our leader. So since we as doctors take care of you in your critical times, you should stand with us,” the mayor’s daughter further wrote.
Doctors across the state have been observing a strike in protest against the attack on their colleagues at NRS Medical College and Hospital in the city by family members of a patient, who died Monday night.
One of them received serious head injuries and is currently recuperating at Institute of Neurosciences.
Services have been affected over the past three days in emergency wards, outdoor facilities and pathological units of many state-run medical colleges and hospitals and a number of private medical facilities in the state, leaving many patients in the lurch.
Banerjee, who visited the state-run SSKM Hospital on Thursday, warned the junior doctors of consequences if they do not rejoin work, but the defiant agitators have refused to abide by the order. They asserted that the protests would continue till their demands are fulfilled.
— India Today (@IndiaToday) June 15, 2019