Sunday, March 26, 2023

Doctors in Manipur threaten cease-work


Doctors of Manipur health services on Tuesday said they are set to resume their suspended agitations with indefinite cease-work strike alleging that the state government has failed to address their long pending demands.
The doctors under the aegis of All Manipur Health Services Doctors’ Association (AMHSDA) were on strike, pressing the state government to address their four-point charter of demands.
Talking to reporters at Manipur Press Club in Imphal today, AMHSDA general secretary Lolee P Mao alleged that doctors were neglected by the state government.
“Government treats our services as essential but doesn’t bother for our well-being,” he said lamenting that government was testing the patience of the doctors instead of addressing their long pending demands.
Mao claimed that the doctors under the aegis of AMHSDA have been pressing the state government to materialize their demand for the last two years but the state government remained deaf to their demand.
On account of the failure on the part of the state government to address their demands, the doctors resumed the strike from the last week of October last year.
The protest began with doctors wearing of black badges while discharging duties. It was followed by a series of sit-in-demonstrations across the 16 districts of the state.
In the middle of November, they suspended the strike after a talk at the level of the state health minister had assured to address four key demands by tabling them in a cabinet meeting.
After the assurance failed to materialize, the doctors resumed the strike with mass casual leave and closure of OPD in all government healthcare centres, including district hospitals.
The OPD closure strike was also suspended recently after the health minister once again assured to discuss the demands in the cabinet meeting but it was not discussed in the recent cabinet meeting convened on January 25, the general secretary said.
“It is unfortunate that the government resorted to delaying tactics over our demands” he said reiterating that AMHSDA had decided to launch the cease work strike after due consultations with over 1,300 of its members serving in different healthcare centres across the 16 districts of the state.
When the indefinite cease work strike will commence will be decided soon, the general secretary said asserting that for the time being they were yet to fix the date for resumption of the strike.
The AMHSDA has been pressing the state government to address their four-point demand which included among others time bound/scale promotion, extension of superannuation age of specialist and non-specialist doctors to 65 years as administrative post as per the declaration of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The doctors’ body also demanded inclusion of non-practicing allowance (NPA) in the basic pay with effect from January 1 of 2016 as per the 7th Central Pay Commission and major amendment of the outdated MHS rules 1982.

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