Resident doctors at the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences here who are battling an acute hostel accommodation crunch now claim to have got a positive response from the Institute administration.

“At present, because of the acute shortage of proper hostel facilities nearly 60 per cent of the resident doctors are staying outside the Institute premises. We had earlier written to Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad and met the hospital administration asking them to look into the problem of shortage of hostel rooms which has forced many doctors and medical students to stay outside the campus. Finally the hospital administration has given a favourable response. They told us that we will get an official go-ahead within a month or so and then work will begin on adding more hostels for the doctors,” said AIIMS Resident Doctors' Association president Dr. Debjyoti Karmakar.

“The shortage of living space within the Institute premises is not a new problem. We have been complaining about eve-teasing, unsafe neighbourhood and the problems of commuting to and from the hospital at odd hours because of shortage of accommodation within the campus. But despite repeated complaints, the doctors continued to suffer because of the attitude of the civic bodies and the inability of the hospital administration to push for our demands,” said a senior resident doctor at the Institute.

“The Institute administration had promised us three years ago that they would be building a 1,600-room luxury hostel. The construction hasn't even started. We often work for long hours and finish work at odd hours. This becomes a problem especially for women resident doctors who often have no secure transportation facility available. We want more hostels to accommodate the resident doctors and we are not asking for luxury hostels,” added Dr. Karmakar. The Society of Young Scientists (consisting of M.Sc. and Ph.D. students at the Institute) too has now joined the RDA to ask for greater hostel accommodation.

Meanwhile, the resident doctors have yet again approached the Institute administration to look into the dog and monkey menace on the campus. “The Institute has been facing the menace of stray dogs and monkeys for several years now. On an average we have at least one monkey or dog bite a month. Despite complaining about it to the hospital administration many times, no lasting solution has been found. The New Delhi Municipal Council too has not been of much help,” said Dr. Karmakar.

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