HYDERABAD: Patients needing medical attention at Gandhi Hospital continue to be affected as the strike by contract nurses of the hospital entered its second day. The strike has become a tug-of-war between the 200 nurses and officials, as both are ready to hold talks but waiting for the other party to make the first move.
The striking nurses, led by All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC) and Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), are demanding that their jobs be regularized, and salaries hiked. Doctors at the hospital said that health services have been hampered due to shortage of workforce.
Strike notices were served to officials in the month of June and July. Last month, Telangana’s Director of Medical Education (DME), Dr M Ramani, held talks with the nurses, and sought two-months time to look into their demands. And a meeting was set in the first week of July regarding the same.
However, the nurses on strike alleged that they did not receive a favourable response when they went to meet the DME earlier this month. “We will go for talks only if invited,” said V Madhulatha, a nurse.
CITU leader T Venkatesh said that the strike will continue till their demands are met. He said the nurses have been working for the past nine years and their jobs should be made permanent, without a screening test as they have work experience.
DME Dr Ramani said that she informed the superintendent of the hospital to bring the nurses if they want to hold talks. “I conveyed the message that DME is ready to hear them out,” said Dr G Venkateswarlu, superintendent of Gandhi Hospital.