CHENNAI: Hours after the Madras High Court warned that the ongoing strike by nurses in the State was illegal and stern action, including dismissal from service, could follow, the protestors withdrew their agitation on Wednesday.
The agitation by persons providing essential services called for stern action, the court said. “We thus deem it appropriate to declare the strike as illegal. We pass an interim order restraining the TN Medical Recruitment Board (MRB) Nurses Empowerment Association and MRB Nurses Welfare Association from taking recourse to strike,” said the first bench of Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice M Sundar.
Passing interim orders on a petition from N Ganesh of Avadi, the bench made it clear that any member of these two associations refraining from attending to work or performing duty should do so at his/her risk of consequences thereof, including termination of employment and/or penalisation for gross contempt of court.
Once the members of these two associations resume work, the State health and family welfare department or its representatives shall immediately resume negotiations for immediate improvement of service conditions and in particular, enhancement of remuneration, the bench added.
The status report relating to the outcome of the negotiation should be filed before the court, the bench said, adjourning the matter till January 2.
After retired judge D Hariparanthaman explained to the agitators about the court order, the nurses called off their stir.
Over 1,000 nurses were continuing their protest for the third day braving the rain even after the HC order to resume work. Hariparanthaman, who came to extend his support to the nurses, appealed to them to resume duty in the wake of the order to constitute a committee and submit its recommendations to the government.
Earlier speaking to the press, Director of Public Health K Kolandaswamy said over 200 nurses who were recruited prior to 2015 batch will be regularised soon.
The government, he said, will speed up the process of regularisation. The government also gave additional time to the nurses to join duty.
Journalists who came to cover the nurses’ protest at the DMS campus staged a dharna after police and health department officials denied access to them. They were allowed after the demonstration.
Doctors continue their protest, take out rally
Chennai: Over 100 post graduate in-service doctors took out a rally on Wednesday to protest against the recent recruitment of non-service doctors in various medical college hospitals. The rally started from Rajarathinam stadium to highlight their demand. The protest continued for the 14th day.