Violence against health workers to become a ‘non-bailable’ offence in India — with upto ₹2 lakh in fine and 5 years of jail
- The Indian government today cleared an ordinance protecting health workers from attacks and said it will amend the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897.
- Any crime against health workers in India is ‘cognizable and non-bailable’. Those who commit the crime will be fined anywhere between ₹50,000 to ₹2 lakh and will also have to serve prison term between 3 months to five years.
- Apart from this, people who damage the vehicles or clinics of healthcare workers will have to compensate by paying twice the amount of the damaged property.
Offenders can also be fined anywhere ₹50,000 to ₹2 lakh and will also have to serve a prison term between 3 months to five years, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said today.
The Indian government today cleared an ordinance to this effect to protect health workers. The government will also amend the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897, Javedkar said.
AdvertisementThese cases will also be fast-tracked. Investigation against such cases will take place within 30 days and a decision will be announced within a year, Javadekar added.
“Attack on COVID19 warriors wont be toleratedCabinet approves promulgation of Ordinance making acts of violence… https://t.co/xi8kXOWLCG— All India Radio News (@airnewsalerts) 1587549904000
“Health workers who are trying to save the country from this epidemic are unfortunately facing attacks. No incident of violence or harassment, against them, will be tolerated. An ordinance has been brought in, it'll be implemented after President's sanction,” said Javadekar in a press conference.
Also, people who damage the vehicles of healthcare workers or clinics will have to compensate by paying twice the value of the damaged property.
Indian health authorities are fighting against the stigma and taboo against healthcare workers. Multiple incidents of stone-pelting and attacks against them have been noted in the last few weeks.
On April 15, a mob tried to stop a medical team from taking a coronavirus-infected man into isolation. They hurled stones at an ambulance in Moradabad, injuring a doctor and three paramedics. Police later arrested 17 people including seven women allegedly involved in the incident.
In early April in Indore, a shocking video of an angry local mob attacking healthcare workers and civic officials was recorded on camera. Moreover, 100 other locals abused health workers who came to take the samples.
See also: Air conditioning spread the coronavirus to 10 people sitting near an infected person in a restaurant. It has huge implications for the service industry.
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