Thursday, February 21, 2019

Residency in India: Harassment and speaking up against it

Let me be honest with you, when I first heard about the abuse of a resident by Dr. Rajashree Katke madam, I chose to ignore it.

"She's not that bad," I thought. Doesn't the resident know how the system works?

I'm embarrassed that the system has made me feel like it is okay for mentors to treat you like this. Mentors are supposed to guide you, inspire you. Not humiliate you at every chance they get.

I'm ashamed of myself because I'm used to how the government hospitals in India can get and used to not raising my voice against it.

I forgot how deeply I condemned such practices - people like her are one of the reasons why I didn't want to do my residency in India.

I worked as a CMO under Dr. Rajashree Katke and I've seen students, residents, medical officers, nurses, paramedical staff and even peons be verbally abused by her at some point. I'm confident none of them will come forward. (I'm also confident that I'll never get my experience letter after writing this, the one I asked for multiple times but never got signed because I didn't show up with an expensive gift.)

People who are asking for proof: There'll be no proof. I wish I recorded her disrespecting people. There'll be no proof of her refusing to teach if her demands aren't met. I can recall residents waiting for her outside her office. Isn't someone's word proof? Is it not evidence?

I'm glad the resident spoke up. Residency is tough. Isn't there too much work already for doctors? Is it too much to expect humane behavior from our mentor?

To the resident:
Maybe you weren't an unlucky girl.

Maybe it was fate who wanted you to be in that position, so that you can raise your voice against such people. You are the reason that hopefully, this abuse will end.

And no other resident will have to deal with this ever again.

Thanks for raising your voice.


This post is supporting a resident and our dear author, Sakkan. She has been doing her residency with a verbally abusive mentor. 

She decided to speak up against it and without our support, no action will be taken. Read more here:

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