OPDs hit at 2 MCD-run hospitals

Doctors go on strike to demand pending pay

OPD services at two major MCD-run hospitals were severely hit with doctors going on three-hour-long strikes for the past three days demanding their pending salaries.  

While emergency patients were attended to, most patients at the outdoor patient department (OPD) were turned away, said officials at the two hospitals.

Doctors from Bara Hindu Rao Hospital and Kasturba Hospital met Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday over non-payment of salaries since March. Kejriwal has promised the issue will be resolved soon, said doctors. 

The doctors will continue with their three-hour-long agitation from 9 am to noon every day till the authorities resolve the issue.

They have even threatened to launch into a full-fledged strike from the next week if the issue is not taken up on priority basis.

Doctors from the four other major MCD-run hospitals will also join in the strike then to show solidarity with the cause.

“We tried to run the services as smoothly as possible with the staff crunch,” said an administrative official at Bara Hindu Rao Hospital.  

Currently, the salaries of regular doctors at the two hospitals under the North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) have not received payments for the past two months.
The salaries for February were cleared only after the doctors at Hindu Rao had launched an agitation in March.

Along with the salaries, house and travel allowances are also pending.
With the ongoing tussle over funds between the Municipal Corporation of Delhi and the Delhi government over payment of salaries, employees are suffering almost every alternate month.

“The doctors are bearing the brunt of political conflict between the government and the corporation. We told the Chief Minister we should not suffer in the process,” said Dr R R Gautam, President, Municipal Corporation Doctors Association.

“The Chief Minister has verbally given us assurance that there will be a solution within a week. But we are weary as there is no reassurance from the MCD yet,” said Dr Gautam.
The doctors were not given any assurance from the Mayor of NDMC when they met him on Wednesday evening, said a member of the association.

“There are no funds available with us at present. We can release the salaries only when NDMC receives the money,” said Mohan Bhardwaj, Chairperson, Standing Committee, NDMC.

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