More than 250 nursing and other medical staff of the Birla Institute of Medical Research Hospital, Gwalior went on an indefinite strike on Tuesday demanding higher wages and better working conditions.
The nurses and medical staff are also demanding extra pay for overtime duty and proper implementation of the leave procedure. Currently a nursing staff is paid around Rs 7000 while a medical staff gets about Rs 5000 per month.
Almost all the nurses and medical staff came out of the hospital in the morning demonstrating in front of the administrative building. Only the In-charges and a few senior nurses were on duty in order to take care of the critical patients. It was learnt that they too are supporting the struggle but did not take part in the demonstrations on humanitarian grounds.
Around 1 am, the administration of BIMR hospital called the representatives of the striking staff and agreed to increase the wages by Rs 1000 to Rs 1500 but the striking staff is not satisfied with this. The representatives of the agitating staff said that the current salary is not enough to survive in a city like Gwalior. They further claimed that the hospital authorities have not been paying them salaries according to the seniority and experience.
At this point the CEO of the hospital Dr Mishra maintained that the strike is unlawful as no notice was given. He added that when critical patients are fighting for their lives in the hospital, the nurses cannot be unmindful of the consequences of their strike. He also reminded the striking staff that the salary and other perks were decided at the time of appointment to the satisfaction of all parties involved.
With the nurses on strike, the patients and their relatives were seen running from pillar to post for medical aid. According to unconfirmed reports the hospital authorities are contemplating strict action against the striking staff, including termination of services.