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Growing outrage over Mumbai doctor suicide

May 30, 2019

The suicide death of a young Mumbai doctor continues to cause an uproar across social media. 26-year-old Dr Payal Tadvi hanged herself in her room at the BYL Nair Hospital. She was allegedly driven to suicide after she faced intense harassment from seniors at the workplace.

Many people have alleged that the accused doctors, Hema Ahuja, Bhakti Mehre and Ankita Khandelwal would constantly abuse her in front of patients and even throw files at her in front of other patients. All of them have been arrested by Mumbai police.

The accused have denied the allegations and asked for a fair trial. They have been charged under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

Dr Tadvi's parents and friends have told the media she was routinely targeted and was fed up of the harassment.

My friend,Dr. Payal Tadvi ended her life due to constant mental torture by her seniors at Nair hospital Mumbai.Her several complaints were never looked into. The three accused women should be punished. -Dr Simin Khan, Dr Payal Tadvi's friend

Dr Tadvi's husband Salman and mother Abida Salim allege that she was constantly harassed by the three senior doctors. She took her complaints to the head of the department but no action was taken. Her family says she was discriminated against as she was from a Scheduled Tribe. The humiliation was reportedly persistent and even extended to WhatsApp groups and Dr Tadvi was depressed for a long time.

Dr Tadvi hesitated to file a police complaint as she feared her career would be finished. Her family has now requested for strict action and speedy justice against the culprits.

Over the past few days, protests were held by NGOs, Dalit organisations and activists outside the BYL Nair Hospital. All the three doctors have been suspended from the Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD).

The Maharashtra State Women's Commission has sent a notice to the hospital asking for an explanation within eight days.

Meanwhile political groups have also extended support. "Adivasi medical student Payal Tadvi's suicide exposes how casteism dehumanises doctors who study to give care and stains their education. It calls for the government to take cognisance and for us tribals to unite in our fight against such discrimination, tweeted politician Vijay Kumar Hansdak.

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