Over 5,000 resident doctors from across the capital observed a symbolic strike from 10 am to 12 pm Tuesday in solidarity with doctors of North MCD-run Hindu Rao Hospital, Rajan Babu TB Hospital and Kasturba Gandhi Hospital, who have not received salaries for the last four months.
Protesting against the delay, five doctors of Hindu Rao Hospital have been on an indefinite hunger strike since October 23. A few senior doctors also protested and struck work Tuesday and said they will continue to remain on strike till a permanent solution is found.
North MCD in a statement said salaries till September have been released to hospitals and that efforts are on to release salaries of all its employees in a phased manner as funds are being arranged. However, resident doctors said there was no assurance about their pay in the coming months.
Dr K P Rewani, joint secretary, Municipal Corporation Doctors Association (MCDA), said, “The mayor visited Hindu Rao and said doctors will receive their salary till September. However, the MCDA is not satisfied with this as we want a permanent solution.”
In a statement Monday night, Federation of Resident Doctors’ Association India said “non-payment/irregular payment of salaries has been a recurring problem in North MCD hospitals…” FORDA president Dr Shivaji Dev Barman said, “We are having a symbolic pen-down strike to show solidarity with doctors and health workers who have not been paid for months. About 14-15 hospitals are observing symbolic protests, including around 5,000-6,000 resident doctors.”
RDAs of other facilities, including Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital, Lady Hardinge Medical College and Associated Hospitals, and Sanjay Gandhi Memorial Hospital, also released similar statements. Doctors from these hospitals maintained that senior doctors continued to see patients and OPDs were not shut entirely.
Dr Joyutpal Biswas, RDA general secretary, Safdarjung Hospital, said Covid hospitals observed black ribbon strikes to “show solidarity and not to trouble patients”. Meanwhile, AIIMS RDA wrote to the PM Tuesday, requesting him to pay doctors of the three hospitals from PM CARES fund as a temporary measure.
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