ISLAMABAD/LAHORE - Adviser to the Prime Minister on Interior Rehman Malik on Monday lashed out at the Punjab government, saying action against protesting doctors was not justified.
In a statement, the adviser said doctors were a respectable part of the society, adding that in civilized societies issues were resolved through dialogue. He said suppressing anyone’s voice for their rights only aggravated the situation.
He said Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, “who likes strikes”, took special care of those officials who worked against the federal government.
Responding to Malik’s statement during interaction with reporters in Lahore on Monday, Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah said the adviser on interior should not interfere in provincial matters.
“I will advise Mr Adviser to mind his own business,” Sanaullah said, adding that Malik’s statements had no significance.
He said Malik should take care of targeted killings in Karachi instead of meddling in Punjab’s affairs.
The provincial law minister said Malik should not side with the on-strike doctors who were playing with the lives of the patients.
He said they could not be given any relaxation anymore as they had sabotaged the peace of hospitals besides leaving the patients on fate’s mercy.
He was of the view that young doctors while protesting for acceptance of their demands left the humanity and social norms behind.
“Inhuman attitude of the young doctors is not tolerable at all and strict action would be taken against those who tried to sabotage peace and played with innocent lives,” he added.
The provincial minister said doctors were bound to follow the services act. He said the provincial government had prepared a strategy to deal with the protesters with an iron hand.Sanaullah said the government had spent billions of the public’s money on doctors for their education.
He said the OPDs in Punjab had started functioning and 2,000 doctors would start working within the next two days through the Punjab Service Commission.
He said 600 of the striking doctors had resumed their duties, adding that 36 doctors had been taken into protective custody for 30 days.