Action demanded against official for ‘harassing’ nurse

CHITRAL: Nurses Forum here announced to observe a symbolic protest by wearing black armbands on Thursday against alleged harassment of a male nurse quarantined in Chitral by an official of the district administration.

The decision was taken at a meeting of the forum held in Chitral town on Wednesday.

Earlier, in a video on social media, Tanvir Alam Khan from Garam Chashma said he works as a staff nurse at the District Headquarters (DHQ) Hospital Upper Dir.

On April 16, he reached Chitral on leave after taking a certificate from a medical officer of his hospital that he had not come into contact with any COVID-19 patient.

But when he reached Chitral, he was shifted to a quarantine centre by the district administration. His sample was sent for test but the result remained inconclusive due to an error in sample collection.

Mr Khan was again called to the hospital for collection of another sample on April 21. After giving sample, he was told to sit in a vehicle to return to the quarantine centre.

But Mr Khan objected and said he would not sit in the vehicle in which some people who had already come into contact with a coronavirus positive patient were also travelling.

When he requested to an official whom he identified as AC Shehzad that he should be sent back in another vehicle, the latter allegedly misbehaved and tried to bundle him into the vehicle on gunpoint.

The nurses forum said two other nurses, Khadija and Rashida, working at the DHQ hospital Dir had come to Chitral after testing themselves and taking the negative results. But they were also shifted to a quarantine centre in Chitral, which they said was an injustice.

The meeting said when nurses were working at the forefront against the coronavirus, such humiliation at the hands of the administration officials was unacceptable.

They said the male nurse has decided to go on a hunger strike if action was not taken against the official. They said the government should take action against the official to avoid such incidents in future.

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