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No pay for 2000 Telangana healthcare workers in 4 months

Contract workers are facing overdue salary payments since their papers have not been renewed, even though they are still on duty.

Published: 03rd August 2021 09:42 AM  |   Last Updated: 03rd August 2021 09:42 AM   |  A+A-

Doctors

For representational purposes.

Express News Service

HYDERABAD: Despite working overtime across both waves of Covid-19, healthcare workers in Telangana continue to receive a raw deal. Nearly 2,000 of them including lab technicians, pharmacists and paramedics hired on contract basis have not received their salaries for the last four months, since April, 2021. The issue appears to have arisen after the Department of Health failed in renewing their yearly contract in the month of April. Since 2001, when such staffers were first recruited, the practice is to renew contracts for a period of one year.

“Since 2001-09, several contractual staff were hired by the Health Department whose contracts are renewed every year. This year, however, the contract was not renewed, even though the staff are discharging their duties. But the salaries have not been given as there isn’t any contract,” explains Ravinder Manchala, State General Secretary, Telangana State Government Medical Lab Technicians Association. There are 300-odd lab technicians, 200 pharmacists, 1,200 multi-health assistants, paramedics, paramedics, ophthalmic assistants among these 2,000 staffers.

Bills piling up

“For four months, I have not paid for the ration at home. We are buying basic kirana items on loan. For bills, my aged parents are forced to pay,” rues Sunand Rao B, a lab technician from Jagtial district.

No regularisation of jobs

The staff feel doubly shortchanged as since 1998, there has been no regular recruitment for these jobs. “In 1998, we had the last recruitment drive for permanent jobs. Since then, only contract and outsourcing recruitments have been conducted. In 2017, there was a court case which is still not resolved. Owing to this, many who were hopeful of a permanent job then, have even retired now,” adds Sunand.



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