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Two Indian states promise to enforce act that punishes violent attacks against doctors

BMJ 2015; 350 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.h2725 (Published 20 May 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;350:h2725
  1. Priyanka Pulla
  1. 1Bangalore

Doctors’ associations across India have scored a victory in their campaign for better implementation of the Medical Protection Act, with the state governments of Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu agreeing to educate their police forces about the provisions of the act. The government of Haryana has promised similar action in the coming weeks, leading the state branch of the Indian Medical Association (IMA) to cancel a strike scheduled for 20 May.

The Medical Protection Act makes attacks on doctors and clinical property a non-bailable offence, punishable by imprisonment of up to three years and a penalty of Rs50 000 (£500; €690; $785). It is currently in force in 17 states. But, although it is widely implemented in some states such as Andhra Pradesh, the first state to pass the act, others such as Uttar Pradesh and Bihar haven’t seen state-wide adoption. As a result, there is no legal deterrent to the escalating incidents of violence against doctors …

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