The Indian Medical Association (IMA) on Monday began a relay hunger strike across the country against the Central Council of Indian Medicine's (CCIM) order authorising post-graduate practitioners in specified streams of ayurveda to be trained to perform general surgical procedures.
"All IMA members & modern medicine doctors across the country have started relay hunger strike from today at more than 50 places across the country," the apex association of private practitioners of modern medicine said.
While women doctors will be on hunger strike all across the nation on February 7, the strike will be observed till February 14, it added.
The IMA also said that all specialty associations across the country have joined the strike through the Federation of Medical Associations (FMA) under its aegis. The association plans to turn the strike into a national movement.
"Dental Association has also joined this national movement. We will release the awareness movement for people of the country. All Members of Parliament & MLAs & respective state governments will be upraised regarding the national movement. Internationally, IMA shall apprise various associations from different countries about this unscientific notification," it said.
The IMA has also instructed its Medical Students' Network (MSN), Junior Doctors' Network (JDN), IMA Women's' Wing, IMA Hospital Board, In-service Doctors, Medical Colleges to participate in the hunger strike.
The whole exercise by the IMA is to push for immediate withdrawal of the latest notification by CCIM which, the association claims, is impractical, unscientific and promotes "mixopathy" of different streams of medicine.
"We have launched the freedom struggle of modern medicine from the forces of mixopathy," it said.
Through the notification, the Central government had allowed Post Graduate students of ayurveda to perform a variety of general surgery including orthopaedic, ophthalmology, ENT and dental through notifying an amendment in a gazette notification the CCIM issued in November. The latest amendment allows PG Ayurveda students to receive formal training for such procedures. The training modules for surgical procedures will be added to the curriculum of Ayurvedic studies.
The CCIM amended Indian Medicine Central Council (Post Graduate Ayurveda Education) Regulations, 2016, to include the aforementioned regulation to allow the PG students of Ayurveda for practicing the general surgery.
This move has drawn a lot of criticism from the doctors of modern medicine which also result in a series of protests the country witnessed last December, called by the IMA.
"Though there are many systems of medicine, ayurveda, siddha, unani etc. IMA respects, welcomes & proposes that all our traditional systems should strive hard & make themselves more people centred & evidence based. New government policy of Mixopathy of all systems, in which the mutually unrelated principles & mode of operandi are integrated unscientifically together as a one system. IMA strongly opposes the proposal to make a single doctor practicing all systems together," the association said.
The IMA has also filed a civil writ petition in the Supreme Court against the CCIM notification. (IANS)