Authorities not doing enough against quacks, say doctors

The inaction of the DHS in conducting raids to close down illegal clinics in the city invited the ire of the medical bodies. Following an agitation by doctors, the department has now assured them of conducting raids soon.

Even though the Delhi Medical Council (DMC) had earlier decided to observe an anti-quackery fortnight in October which was later extended to a month, very few raids were conducted.

The council got very little aid from the Directorate of Health Services (DHS) which is responsible to provide with the manpower to conduct the raids. A series of public holidays posed hindrance in conducting raids, said sources.

“Every month, the DHS is supposed to conduct one raid in each district. However, the figures of raids in the last six months is appalling,” said Dr Naresh Chawla, Chairperson, Anti-Quackery department, Indian Medical Association, Delhi North Zone.

“This shows the callousness and indifference of the department. There is no fear among the quacks thriving in the city because of the lack of raids,” said Dr Naresh Chawla said.

The medical body protested outside the DHS office on Friday afternoon.

Hollow promises

“We held the dharna from 1-4 pm. Following this, we submitted a memorandum to the Director, DHS regarding the inaction against quacks despite the High Court order and clear cut  instructions by the government,” said Dr Chawla.

In spite of being assured that action will be initiated by the government soon, the medical bodies think these are mostly hollow promises.

“When we agitated some time back, the department had assured us of action soon too. But despite the anti-quackery departments being flooded with complaints on wrong treatment in the hands

 of quacks, there is no effort to clamp down on them,” said Dr Anil Bansal, Chairperson, Anti-Quackery Committee, Delhi Medical Association.

Also, most raids are conducted on the basis of complaints received. The inaction to shut down illegal clinics comes at a time when the government has proposed amendments to the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971 which includes allowing those practicing Homeopathy, Ayurvedic, Unani medicines to conduct abortions in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. 

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