Services hit at government medical hospital in Amritsar as strikes cripple normal functioning

Jr resident docs boycott work; expelled safai sewaks also up in arms

Services hit at government medical hospital in Amritsar as strikes cripple normal functioning

Expelled safai sewaks hold a protest outside Guru Nanak Dev Hospital in Amritsar on Friday.

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, December 3

Strikes marred the functioning of the Government Medical College and hospital on Friday. The junior resident doctors as well as the expelled safai sewaks held a sit-in seeking fulfilment of their demands.

The junior doctors observed a complete strike today. It disrupted the medical services as they are the main medical workforce in all departments of the hospital.

They are asking the government to conduct the counseling for the NEET PG at the earliest. Due to delay in the counseling new staff is not joining, resulting in the pressure of work on the junior doctors who are also pursuing their post-graduation. They said overburdening of work had been disrupting their daily study schedule.

These departments are X-ray, orthopedics, surgery, medicine, pathology, micro-biology, forensic, bio-chemistry, paediatrics, gynae and others. They held a protest outside the OPD. Even MRI, CT scan, ultrasound and all kind of labs were also closed.

Jaswinder Singh of Lopoke village stated that he had specifically come to get some tests conducted for his aged father. “Now, I will have to get these tests conducted from outside which are very expensive.” There were many patients like Jaswinder who came from different parts of the district but had to return disheartened.

Indefinite strike by expelled safai sewaks of government-run hospitals entered the third day on Friday.

Protesters, with most of them being women, said, they were hired eight to 15 years ago. Initially, they were paid Rs 2,700 per month, later it was increased to Rs 3,500.

Their strength was around 150 and nearly half of them were expelled from job after the Covid-19 period. They said now, around 50 of them assembled here, seeking re-appointment. At the time of expulsion, they were drawing a monthly salary of Rs 6,000. Ved Prakash Babloo, former president of AAP district youth wing, also participated in the protest along with the safai sewaks. He questioned the system of the government with regard to class fourth staff.

He said they had carried out main job during the Covid-19 period. Instead of rewarding them, most of them were shunted out. He said there was an indefinite strike and it would be lifted after their demands are accepted.

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