Anti-quota medicos and students struck work on Thursday and took their protest to the Supreme Court's doors, where police burst teargas shells and fired water cannons to disperse them, injuring many.
A large number of resident doctors of key Delhi hospitals went on a mass casual leave and joined medical and university students in a protest demonstration near the Supreme Court, where several of them courted arrest.
The protestors had planned to form a human chain and a silent sit-in demonstration to voice their opposition to the Centre's move to introduce a Bill in Parliament proposing reservation in government-aided educational institutions.
However, healthcare services at All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Maulana Azad Medical College and Bara Hindu Rao Hospital were not affected as consultants and faculty members attended patients at the OPDs and emergency and casualty wards.
"We had drawn up contingency plans. Consultant doctors and faculty members attended to patients. All services and facilities are functioning normally," AIIMS spokesperson Shakti Gupta said.
He said as a precautionary measure, the OPD timings were curtailed by 30 minutes to avoid excess patients as the residents were on strike.
Deputy Commisioner of Police (New Delhi) Anand Mohan said, "We had to resort to bursting teargas shells and firing water canons as the students were moving towards the Supreme Court, where prohibitory orders are in place."
Rapid Action Force and policemen were deployed in large numbers and the agitating students were stopped about 100 meters from the apex court premises.