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Saturday, June 19, 2021

Gujarat: Government medical college teachers’ association gives call for statewide strike from today

Last week, the GMTA wrote to the chief minister listing their demands which they said were pending for more than a decade.

By: Express News Service | Ahmedabad |
Updated: May 13, 2021 4:14:14 am
Nursing staff stage protest seeking better pay at Ahmedabad civil hospital’s covid facility. (Express Photo by Nirmal Harindran)

Accusing the government of failing to fulfil its assurance about their demands with regard to service conditions, hundreds of professors and lecturers affiliated with the Gujarat Medical Teachers Association (GMTA) have declared a statewide strike from Thursday.

Last week, the GMTA wrote to the chief minister listing their demands which they said were pending for more than a decade. On May 7, the medical teachers’ association members also staged a symbolic hunger strike demanding pay hike among other things but withdrew it till May 10 following a meeting with Minister of State for Home Pradeepsinh Jadeja in Gandhinagar.

On Wednesday, more than 1,700 medical teachers at the six government-run medical colleges affiliated with the GMTA declared to join the protest from Thursday. Followed by a symbolic hunger strike by 10 medical faculty members on the BJ Medical College campus Wednesday, a statewide strike of all members on non-Covid duty was announced from Thursday. Those on Covid duty, the GMTA said, would join the demonstration from Friday.

“Despite assurances, there has been no communication from the state government on the issues that were last discussed with the Minister of State for Home Pradeepsinh Jadeja on May 7. As we were assured to receive a confirmation, we waited till Monday and even the following day but no response was received from the authorities. So, finally we had to give a call for the strike,” GMTA president Dr Rajnish Patel said.

The GMTA has been raising its 15-point demand including salary hike, regularising of adhoc teachers, delay in promotion and pension among other issues.Some of these demands include regularisation of services of all ad hoc medical teachers with one single order, approval to non-practicing allowance and implementation of the Seventh Pay Commission. They have also demanded that the exercise for evaluation and promotion should be regularly conducted by the Gujarat Public Service Commission (GPSC) and Departmental Promotion Committee (DPC). The association has demanded implementation of the Tikoo Commission’s recommendations along with other resolutions adopted by the government.

In addition, nursing staff at Gujarat Medical Education and Research Society (GMERS) Sola Civil hospital have also joined the call of the indefinite strike given by GMERS Faculty Association. Also, on the International Nurses Day, the nursing staff Civil Hospital in Asarwa Wednesday held a demonstration in a mark of protest for their long-pending demands for better pay scales.

The GMERS Faculty Association and GMERS Nurses Association, with 700 and 2000 members, respectively, across eight medical colleges and hospitals in the state have joined the indefinite strike from Wednesday. They are also demanding implementation of the Seventh Pay Commission for the medical faculty, including tutors and medical officers, implementation of the state government’s Career Advancement Scheme, benefit of Provident Fund (PF) scheme for GMERS medical faculty, suspension of contract-based appointment of GMERS teachers and extension of departmental promotion committee (DPC) benefits along with entitlement of other benefits, like travel allowance, leave travel concession, medical reimbursement, gratuity and earned leave encashment.

“Since 2016, the Seventh Pay Commission has not been implemented for the GMERS nursing staff. Also, there is no promotion policy for us despite working for last 12 years along with other pending demands, which we have been raising with several government departments,” Dhawal Patel, the president of GMERS Nurses Association said.

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