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|Volume 11 |Issue 39| October 05, 2012 ||
In Despair and Disarray
Last week, I visited Rajshahi Medical Hospital as one of my family members was admitted there. I was really shocked at the pathetic condition of the hospital. This famous institution, is plagued by mismanagement and indifference of the hospital authority. The main gate of the hospital is an attraction for idlers, who gather there and cause disturbance to the patients and others visiting the hospital. Almost every toilet and bathroom is unworthy of use; the smell is so pungent that it is difficult to breathe. Every ward with 70-90 patient capacity is supervised by one or two doctors. One ward is visited by a doctor once a day. Though the emergency department promises 24 - hour services to patients, it doesn't do so, as specialised doctors are not available for 24 hours. So, how does a patient get emergency treatment from 4 pm to 10 am when most of the doctors leave the hospital to treat the patients in their private clinics? Bribery is rampant inside the wards; the ward boys and doctors are seen giving their private cards to the patients to meet them later in their private chambers. The most pathetic side is the doctors' rude and cruel behaviour to the patients. It seems as if they have no humane feeling and sympathy for the patients. May be this is the common picture of every public hospital in the country. Since those who are impoverished go to public hospitals, the authorities concerned, sensing their weakness, maltreat them. This shows moral degradation of doctors and a deviation from the promise they make to the public. The doctors should change their characters and the government should take an initiative to fix the public hospitals.
Considering the horrendous traffic situation of the city, I prefer public transport (i.e. buses) and do not use my car, if I can help it. Last week, I hopped on a bus from Farmgate to go home. The moment I got in, a couple of passengers approached me and began to mumble an apology. It took me a while to understand that they were explaining why they were travelling without tickets. Although I consciously believe that no work is big or small and that that there is dignity in every profession, I must admit that I felt a little indignant at their honest mistake. "Please tell me what made you think that I was a ticket collector," I asked them. They laughed and apologised again, but chose not to answer my question. A similar, but even more awkward thing happened in the same week: I was taking a friend to a restaurant for dinner when the security people thought I was her chauffeur and told me to wait outside.
I was baffled, but my friend laughed and told me later that it was my shoes that gave a wrong impression everywhere.
A Knock to a Bang
I was on my way to work the other day and as usual got stuck in a long, never – ending traffic jam. While waiting, I was accosted by several beggars. Some went away after I politely told them I had no change to spare, but there was one, who kept standing next to my car window, knocking hard; and I was worried that the glass would break. When I shouted at him to stop, he started making lewd comments about my appearance and made several rude hand gestures at me which made me lose my temper and demand that my driver do something about it. I thought if my driver got out of the car, he would be scared enough to walk away but to my surprise he wouldn't. He shoved my driver right back and kept staring at me. I was very angry at the time, but afterwards, when I thought about it, I realised that it is possible that very soon most of the poor on the street will start becoming more persistent and violent as inequality in this society is increasing, bringing with it more hopelessness, frustration and anger. It is worrying to think about the future.
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