Strike hits govt hospitals

Members of the Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute (BMCRI) Stipendary Staff Nurses Welfare Association, who struck work on January 7, are yet to join duty in their respective hospitals.

The 450-odd contract nurses have been demanding regularisation of their services. First, there was a legal hitch when it was learnt that the association was not registered under the Societies Act. Later, when the registration was done, the nurses dragged the medical education department to court. The State Labour Commission too had filed a petition in the High Court.

Now, the striking nurses wish to join their services, but as the case is in the High Court, the BMCRI is unable to issue an order to the nurses to rejoin duty. “We understand that without nurses, hospitals become paralysed. We wish to join duty, but the director of BMCRI is not issuing orders,” said Veena, a contract nurse.

Dr O S Siddappa, dean and director, BMCRI, said orders to rejoin services are likely to be issued on Saturday. “I cannot take a decision all by myself. We need to consult the governing council members. Moreover, the case is in the High Court and hence the delay,” he said.

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