All of sudden shut down of Out Door Patience (OPD) of Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) on Wednesday by Young Doctors Association (YDA) created huge troubles for patients visited hospital for treatment. Dozens of young doctors gathered outside the administration block of the PIMS in the early morning while protesting against the National Licensing Examination (NLE) implemented by Pakistan Medical Commission (PMC) under new legislation passed by the parliament of Pakistan a few months back. The protestors forcibly shutdown the OPD of PIMS and then they entered the admin office in the form of a rally. They chanted slogans against PIMS administration such as “remove PIMS head, all office bearers of PIMS are baghairat (shameless), abolish NLE, etc.” Interestingly, the YDA was shutting down the PIMS while the NLE was executed by the PMC which is located around 10 kilometers away from PIMS in Sector G-10. Moreover, as per information gathered by Daily Times at the time of protest, it was announced that young doctors but not a single old/senior doctor was present on their duties for the whole day to check/ treat the patients. A 48 year old woman who came from Attock to visit an orthopedics doctor for her broken leg routine examination, said that she was waiting here for two hours after receiving initial slip while still not treatment. “Hospital staffers are claiming that the doctor will come on duty but God knows he will come or not,” she said very innocently. Another patient at the dermatology department said that he had been waiting since 9 am but there was no doctor. “The hospital management should at least inform the patients properly about the protest so that they could avoid such kind of massiveness,” he regretted adding that he just came to know from someone that the no doctor will be available here due to the protest. The PIMS have around 30 departments while, as per collected statistics, around 3000 patients visit this hospital on daily basis from different areas of the country, other than twin cities, including Sargohda, Chakwal, Attock, Jehlum, Muree, Azad Kashmir, etc. While showing record at the computer, an official who works at first desk of the PIMS told this scribe that he with other colleagues joined duty in morning in routine, as they were never been informed by the authorities regarding any protest. He said they started issuing slips to the patients who come here for different kinds of treatments. After almost one hour, he added, when almost 300 slips were issued, a group of doctors who seemed like goons, forcibly shutdown all computers installed here at the front desk and asked us to stop working. “After which we immediately informed the higher authorities but no action had been taken afterwards and the admin also let the patients suffer,” he regretted. The Daily Times visited almost all wards of the hospital but found not a single doctor there except its emergency section. When contacted Parliamentary Secretary for National Health Services Dr Nosheen Hamid said that she doesn’t know the exact situation at the hospital due to some personal engagement. However, she reaffirmed, such practice would be never beard. “I would take immediate action within my due capacity against the responsible,” he committed adding that facilitating the patients should be the first priority of all doctors and staffers. While commenting on NLE, Dr Nosheen said that it was introduced just to enhance quality in the medical profession. “It was in order to assess the capacity of the MBBS students as they would have to protect the lives of people,” she said adding that instead of making such a protest the young doctors should hold some table talk with authorities concerned to get some middle or logical solution. According to the available information, a few hundred young doctors reached Islamabad on Tuesday and held a protest against NLE outside the PMC building. A large number of policemen, along with water cannons, were deployed there. After a few hours of protest, they forcibly entered the premises of the commission. This exercise of doctors erupted a clash with police during which several protesters and police officials, including a superintendent of police (SP), were injured. Later a number of students were arrested by police. Later they announced that they would close OPDs of their respective government hospitals across the country. SP, Sadar, Nosherwan told this scribe that the protesters threw bricks at him due to which he was injured. The district administration tried to arrange negotiations between the doctors and Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) on Health Dr Faisal Sultan, but the latter remained unavailable due to a federal cabinet meeting. On the other hand, the PMC announced dates for the next NLE and National Examination Board (NEB) tests, giving an impression that it was not impressed with the show of the protesters. As per PMC official statement, “the NLE exam step II would be held on October 29, NEB on November 28 and NLE step I on December 1.” According to the PMC Act, every graduate after completion of studies has to pass NLE before starting practice. However, medical graduates have been protesting against the NLE saying as they appear in a number of exams to earn an MBBS degree, why they should again have to clear an exam after completion of a house job. When contacted PMC President Dr. Arshad Taqi said that the resistance of the NLE and protests against new legislation was beyond understanding as, he explained, it was for good (upgrade quality). Moreover, the PMC has authority to execute any law in the medical sector. “We are here to implement any law while to promulgate any new policy or law is not the authority of the Commission at all,” he said, adding that some politically motivated persons who are protesting against the PMC needed to understand this hierarchy. “To create such ruckus against the Commission will yield no result as it is totally unjust,” he maintained.