A day after two nursing students arrested in connection with the puppy killings case got bail, Union Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi on Thursday called Neel Ratan Sircar Hospital and demanded that strict action be taken against the accused.
“She spoke for about three minutes and told us that if the accused are not rusticated, she will request the Nursing Council of India to cancel the licence of NRS’s nursing school,” a hospital official told The Indian Express.
College authorities, who are waiting for a final report from Swasthya Bhawan, said they have decided not to allow the accused to attend classes. “Till further action is taken, they cannot live in the hostel or attend classes,” said Dwaipayan Biswas, Deputy Superintendent of NRS.
The developments come after the carcasses of 15 puppies were found dumped on the premises of NRS Hospital in Kolkata’s Sealdah on Sunday, leading to outrage. Hours later, a video surfaced of two women purportedly hitting a puppy repeatedly with sticks. The two women purportedly seen in the video were arrested and later granted bail by a Sealdah court on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, nursing students and members of nursing associations who have been protesting outside NRS Hospital said they would launch a bigger protest if the two accused were not allowed to enter the hostel.
“Without a proper enquiry, on the basis of a video that went viral, how can you arrest someone? Who has certified that the video is genuine?” said Parbati Pal, a protester.
Nursing students claimed they had been facing trouble for a long time because of stray dogs, and that they had informed hospital authorities. They claimed that in the last month, around five students from the hostel were bitten by dogs.
“In the last two years, more than 35 students have been attacked… Students have been staying in fear for long and no one ever took action. The way the puppies were killed was inhuman, we condemn the killings. But that cannot change the fact that the strays are a big problem and hospital authorities must do something about it,” said Pal.