Friday, doctors staged a protest against National Licensing Examination (NLE) in Lahore. The protesting doctors blocked the road leading to Barkat Market, causing problems for citizens.
Police arrived on the scene to make way for the jammed traffic and a scuffle broke out between the protestors and the police. According to sources, the protest was initially intended to be a peaceful one.
Few medical students planned to stage a protest outside the NLE center. They aimed to make videos of the protest and leave soon after that. However, the police arrived with orders to remove protestors at all costs.
Media sources state that police threw tear gas and even beat the protesting students with batons. As a result, the protestors called for backup and young doctors from nearby hospitals arrived at the scene. Fighting broke out between the police and the young doctors, who ended up with severe wounds.
— Syed Zain Ali Naqvi (@SyedZainAliNaq7) August 27, 2021
The authorities are facing a severe backlash as they get criticized for mishandling the situation. Media sources on the scene confirm that the police forces sent outnumbered the initial protestors.
Furthermore, the small group of protestors repeatedly requested SSP Operations Lahore to let them protest in peace. However, authorities ended up using force.
According to details, the security personnel baton-charged the protestors and injured 15 doctors including four females. Rescue teams shifted the wounded demonstrators to hospitals for medical assistance.
Due to the circumstances, NLE postponed the test to Sunday, August 29th.
Why were the doctors protesting?
The Pakistan Medical Commission (PMC) recently made it compulsory for all medical graduates to take the newly-introduced NLE before they start a medical practice. The medical education regulatory body set 70pc of marks as qualifying criteria for the NLE.
However, aspiring doctors said the NLE was not acceptable to them at any cost because first, they would have to study five years to complete MBBS and have to do a house job for another year, and then they would have to take another test to prove themselves as eligible.