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Assertions on medical terrorism refuted

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, May 29 - The Dr Anamika Ray Memorial Trust has countered the assertions made by Indian Medical Association (IMA), Assam Branch, secretary Dr Satyajit Borah on the issue of �medical terrorism,� as �prejudicial and manipulative with an intent that is not above suspicion.�

In a press release, Prof Madhab C Sarma, chairperson of the Dr Anamika Ray Memorial Trust, said Dr Borah in his clarification (The Assam Tribune, May 21, 2016) claimed that Dr Ankuran Dutta�s (managing trustee of the Dr Anamika Ray Memorial Trust) data was �totally absurd, imaginary and outrageous.� Dr Borah had also argued that if two per cent of cases amount to 52 lakh, then total cases amount to �one-fifth of the total population of the country.�

Prof Sarma described the above calculation of Dr Borah to be fallacious and manipulative due to two reasons.

Dr Dutta, in his reply on the May 21 issue of The Assam Tribune, provided the data obtained by Dr Mukesh Yadav and Dr Pooja Rastogi. Similarly, information discussed in the television programme is information in the public domain and Dr Dutta cannot be held responsible for using such information as he has not �invented� them, but has clearly used publicly accessible data, said Professor Madhab C Sarma, chairperson of the Dr Anamika Ray Memorial Trust.

Moreover, Prof Sarma said, Dr Borah also attempts to undercut the seriousness of the issue raised by the movement �Stop Medical Terrorism� and has presented it as a non-issue to further confuse the reading public. However, some data that he provides to refute Dr Dutta�s claims, itself shows the glaring lacuna in his judgement pertaining to the matter. Dr Borah himself states, with reference to the study by Mukesh Yadav and Pooja Rastogi, that 68.7 per cent cases were not proven. However, this leaves a figure of 31.3 per cent to be the proven ones, which is not an insignificant number.

In fact, in a country where documentation is always an issue and much of interaction even with medical professionals is carried out on verbatim, it is extremely difficult to prove incidents like this. This does not undermine the significance of the 31.3 per cent cases that were proven.

The chairperson of the Trust also wonders about Dr Borah�s and the IMA�s motives and intention. Why is Dr Borah focusing on the terminology and not on the issue, especially after the meaning, scope and relevance of the term, and not focusing on the seriousness of the malpractices in the medical profession, which should be a primary concern for the IMA, Prof Sarma wondered.

�No data is provided by the IMA as to the �actual� number of cases according to them. Have they conducted any research into this extremely serious issue? If so, where are the results of that investigation?� questioned Prof Sarma.

He maintained that the purpose of the movement launched by the Dr Anamika Ray Memorial Trust is to bring about improvement in healthcare services in the country through legislation aimed at systemic changes.

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Assertions on medical terrorism refuted

GUWAHATI, May 29 - The Dr Anamika Ray Memorial Trust has countered the assertions made by Indian Medical Association (IMA), Assam Branch, secretary Dr Satyajit Borah on the issue of �medical terrorism,� as �prejudicial and manipulative with an intent that is not above suspicion.�

In a press release, Prof Madhab C Sarma, chairperson of the Dr Anamika Ray Memorial Trust, said Dr Borah in his clarification (The Assam Tribune, May 21, 2016) claimed that Dr Ankuran Dutta�s (managing trustee of the Dr Anamika Ray Memorial Trust) data was �totally absurd, imaginary and outrageous.� Dr Borah had also argued that if two per cent of cases amount to 52 lakh, then total cases amount to �one-fifth of the total population of the country.�

Prof Sarma described the above calculation of Dr Borah to be fallacious and manipulative due to two reasons.

Dr Dutta, in his reply on the May 21 issue of The Assam Tribune, provided the data obtained by Dr Mukesh Yadav and Dr Pooja Rastogi. Similarly, information discussed in the television programme is information in the public domain and Dr Dutta cannot be held responsible for using such information as he has not �invented� them, but has clearly used publicly accessible data, said Professor Madhab C Sarma, chairperson of the Dr Anamika Ray Memorial Trust.

Moreover, Prof Sarma said, Dr Borah also attempts to undercut the seriousness of the issue raised by the movement �Stop Medical Terrorism� and has presented it as a non-issue to further confuse the reading public. However, some data that he provides to refute Dr Dutta�s claims, itself shows the glaring lacuna in his judgement pertaining to the matter. Dr Borah himself states, with reference to the study by Mukesh Yadav and Pooja Rastogi, that 68.7 per cent cases were not proven. However, this leaves a figure of 31.3 per cent to be the proven ones, which is not an insignificant number.

In fact, in a country where documentation is always an issue and much of interaction even with medical professionals is carried out on verbatim, it is extremely difficult to prove incidents like this. This does not undermine the significance of the 31.3 per cent cases that were proven.

The chairperson of the Trust also wonders about Dr Borah�s and the IMA�s motives and intention. Why is Dr Borah focusing on the terminology and not on the issue, especially after the meaning, scope and relevance of the term, and not focusing on the seriousness of the malpractices in the medical profession, which should be a primary concern for the IMA, Prof Sarma wondered.

�No data is provided by the IMA as to the �actual� number of cases according to them. Have they conducted any research into this extremely serious issue? If so, where are the results of that investigation?� questioned Prof Sarma.

He maintained that the purpose of the movement launched by the Dr Anamika Ray Memorial Trust is to bring about improvement in healthcare services in the country through legislation aimed at systemic changes.