The reports said that 281 Ayurvedic doctors have shot a letter to Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray asking his permission to end their lives over non-fulfilment of promises and disrespectful behaviour meted out to them by the Maharashtra government.
In the letter, the doctors have lamented about the ill-treatment of Ayurvedic doctors by the state government, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic. Expressing disappointment over prolonged posting in backward tribal areas, the BAMS doctors said that they have been serving in 18 tribal districts for the last two decades, often visiting remotely located villages that do not even have basic facilities.
The BAMS doctors said that they treat locals in these backward areas for various ailments, including minor illnesses, snake-scorpion bites, treating malnourished children, etc.
The letter written by Ayurvedic doctors comes days after an Ayurvedic doctor Swapnil Lonkar ended his life after he was denied a posting even though he had cleared the MPSC (Maharashtra Public Service Commission) exam.
Dr Sheshrao Suryavanshi, one of the signatories to the permission letter to end their lives, said that the state government gives special incentive allowances to police and government officials serving in these Naxal-affected areas, however, the same benefits are denied to doctors, who are being paid just Rs 24,000 as salary.
Last year, after a meeting between the doctors and Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, Health Minister Rajesh Tope, and the Tribal ministry it was decided that these 281 Ayurvedic doctors working in tribal areas would be given Rs 40,000 rupees instead of the present Rs.24,000 rupees. However, this decision is yet to be implemented.
Expressing his disappointment with the MVA government, Dr Suryavanshi said that the Uddhav Thackeray-led government has not shown any humanity towards them even after extracting hard work under unfavourable conditions in the remotest corners in the state, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic.