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Friday 5 June 2020

Palakkad doctor persecuted for supporting CAA

During an argument on Twitter, my personal details... was revealed... and overnight I was labelled as someone baying for Muslim blood: The Palakkad doctor

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A medical practitioner Vyas Vishwanathan was forced to resign from the hospital that had been a medium for him to return to his roots and serve the people of the place of his origin because he spoke in favour of the amended citizenship law (CAA). Vishwanathan has narrated his plight in a series of tweets from a handle that uses a nom de guerre, which Sirf News is reproducing verbatim with minimal grammatical corrections.

“… In April I moved to Palakkad Kerala from Delhi since I was offered a new job in a brand new hospital! My father’s ancestry is in Palakkad and my parents were overjoyed that after several of our generations who left Palakkad ages ago, I’ll be the one returning!”

“Palakkad residents earlier had only two choices as far as healthcare was concerned. One was to go to Coimbatore or go to Thrissur. This hospital was created so the healthcare needs of the local residents can be met!”

“Work was tiring as we faced an acute shortage of doctors and the hospital still does! Having worked in emergency medicine I was placed in critical care/ICU. Personally I have been very opinionated.”

Palakkad doctor story image
The Twitter handle of the doctor

“So when the anti-CAA protests broke out I was very vocal on twitter with regard to my support for the CAA bill! Like any citizen living in a country plagued by terrorism which had illegal migrants infiltrating through our porous borders I supported the move to weed them out!”

“During such an argument on Twitter, my personal details, with regard to where I worked, my name, designation, etc were revealed by a handle called @yehlog and overnight I was labelled as someone who’s baying for Muslim genocide!”

“Which is ironic as with evidence I have enough tweets to prove I’ve stood by minorities in times where they were discriminated! The management received “concerned” emails that there is a genocidal bigoted doctor who can compromise the health of a Muslim patient.”

“The management felt that I’ve caused them a significant amount of disrepute on account of my tweets (where I’ve not mentioned any religion and have only asked for the removal of illegal immigrants) , and asked that I resign within 24 h.”

“You can’t fit your home in three suitcases. So within three hours I’ve left behind a significant amount of my possessions at a significant financial loss, leaving the city of my forefathers like a thief responsible for a crime he didn’t commit!”

“The news of my sacking has reached those who wanted it, with false claims and they’re now celebrating online! But the one who lost was actually the institution and the native population! In an already short-staffed hospital, w, one hardworking doctor was asked to leave.”

Palakkad doctor persecuted for supporting CAA image

“I left wordlessly unable to take calls from my colleagues who were shocked and saddened at my sudden departure! And the befitting irony is, having supported the Indian government on removing illegal immigrants, I had to leave the city of my forefathers, rendered homeless in 24 h.”

“I left the ICU midway with three critical patients. I deactivated my twitter account not out of cowardice but out of personal safety (as some handles have openly been revealing my name and location). But I’ve attached tweets where I’ve spoken in favour of the very minorities.”

“Now a core warning: I’m not sure about being guilty of a genocidal fascist, but I am certainly guilty of being very naive. Naive to think that being opinionated is harmless.”

“There are outfits which track down doctors who are politically opinionated, support the government and in SM make horrendous accusations against them. I’m not the first victim and I may not be the last!”

“That being said since they’re so keen on exposing hard-working professionals, putting their lives in peril. It’s about time we started exposing their real identities and intent! Some stories have to be told, some silences have to be broken. Our fight has just begun! Jai Hind!”

Vishwanathan has tagged the Prime Minister’s Office, the office of the home minister and Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan in the reply to the last tweet above, drawing their attention to his plight.

Tweet related to the protests against CAA

We contacted the administration of Avitis Institute of Medical Sciences for their comments on the virtual sacking of the Dr Vishwanathan. One of them has responded via WhatsApp (the left-aligned image above). As and when they respond on letterhead, we will accommodate the reply in our report.

Addendum

A few hours after this report was published, defence analyst Abhijit Iyer-Mitra exposed the hypocrisy of the administration of the Avitis hospital, some members of which are alleging that they had to ask Dr Vishwanathan to go because of his tweets that smack of religious discrimination.

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