More than 7,000 resident doctors at government colleges in Maharashtra went on strike on Monday over a range of issues, including the quality of hostels and filling of vacant posts of assistant and associate professors.
The Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD) accused the government of compelling it to contemplate shutting of emergency services by not heeding to their demands when there are apprehensions about the new variant of Omicron. Talking to reporters, state Medical Education Minister Girish Mahajan said he has asked resident doctors to engage in a dialogue and urged them not to stretch the matter further.
MARD, which has called the strike, has claimed students at government colleges were facing problems due to poor quality of hostels.
The resident doctors have also pressed for the recruitment of 1,432 senior resident doctors and demanded filling vacant posts of associate and assistant professors.
MARD said if their demands are accepted, then it will greatly benefit the state’s health infrastructure.
At Sir JJ Hospital, the largest medical facility run by the state government in Mumbai, there has been no major impact so far, Dean Dipali Sapale said.
“They (the resident doctors) have not curtailed their services in emergency services, labour ward, operation theatres, Intensive Care Unit. The senior doctors have covered the general ward and OPDs. Routines surgeries have also taken place,” Sapale said.
Minister Mahajan said half of the demands of the striking doctors were being approved immediately, and Rs 12 crore has been given to the public works department (PWD) for repair works.
“We are positive about everything. They (doctors) should have spoken to us before going on strike,” Mahajan said.
Speaking to PTI, MARD president Avinash Dahiphale said the association has not received any proposal from the state government for talks. Resident doctors are a crucial cog in the government and civic body run hospitals, which see heavy footfall of patients.
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