The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Residents rally behind doctor

Oct. 26: The doctor who had left Apollo Hospitals in Hyderabad to join a clinic in Malda and got thrashed by Kali puja organisers when he refused to pay Rs 1,001 as subscription had neighbours by his side today.

Sudhir Kalyankar said from the bed of the nursing home where he had been a radiologist and is now a patient with a bruised nose that some neighbours and members of the local club met him and apologised for the incident. “They assured me that there would be no repetition of such incidents. They also urged me not to leave Malda,” said the Maharashtrian born and brought up in Andhra Pradesh.

But even as Kalyankar expressed hope in his neighbours, a section of them alleged that police were “doing too much” to arrest the youths who barged into his home and bashed him up on Thursday.

About 500 residents stood in rain in front of Englishbazar police station, half-a-kilometre from Malda Nursing Home, shouting slogans against “police harassment”. They alleged that the police harassed them on the pretext of searching for the youths who beat up Kalyankar.

“The police have been picking up people who are not remotely related to the incident. They just barge in anytime. The police have been terrorising us,” said one of the demonstrators.

District superintendent of police Pankaj Dutta said: “We raided 11 houses last night. I led the raid on Friday night. I know that none of my officers misbehaved with the residents. No one helped them either.”

Seven youths, who were arrested, were released on bail this afternoon. Two of them were picked up this morning and four surrendered. The treasurer of the club was held on Friday.

Kalyankar had joined the little-known clinic in Malda a fortnight ago, quitting Apollo in the hope of an independent and more promising career.

Despite the neighbours’ assurance, Kalyankar is struggling to shake off the trauma. “I cannot forget what happened that night. It will be difficult for me to stay on,” said the doctor.

Madhyamik revamp

Left Front chairman Biman Bose today said the syllabus and curriculum of Madhyamik examinations will have to be upgraded. “We have seen that there is a gap between the syllabi of Madhyamik and HS and we want to bridge that. Higher Secondary is the gateway to higher education and so those passing Madhyamik should not find it too difficult,” he said.

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