SRINAGAR: Senior and junior resident doctors of SMHS Hospital have gone on indefinite strike against deductions made in their monthly salaries without any intimation to them.
The doctors complained that they have been deceived by the higher-ups regarding pay structures for the last three years. However, on Wednesday, instead of hiking their salaries, the doctors found their payments have been deducted.
“We are the resident doctors of Government Medical College (GMC) Srinagar and associated hospitals. We carry out our duties with zeal and zest, but today we are left with no option but to go on indefinite strike till our demands are fulfilled,” said a group of resident doctors.
“Since last two years, we have requested our concerned officials regarding our pay hike as per SKIMS norms, as we are the most underpaid and overburdened residents, working in a very hostile environment. Despite repeated meetings, reminders and requests, nothing concrete has been done regarding our pay hike. Instead of hiking the salaries of both junior and senior residents, our pay has been curtailed from time to time,” they complained.
According to the doctors, there is a huge pay difference within the state, and doctors working in SKIMS are getting double the monthly salary as compared to residents working in GMC and associated hospitals.
“The Supreme Court ruling is equal pay for equal work. However, it has never been implemented in GMC Srinagar. We and our colleagues are working at the same post and designation after passing the same exam conducted by the same competent authority as doctors in other hospitals, including SKIMS. Yet doctors are getting much more pay per month elsewhere than doctors at GMC Srinagar,” they saidf.
The strike caused great anxiety and stress to patients awaiting treatment both indoors and in the out-patient department. Speaking to Kashmir Reader, Hafeez Feroze, a patient, said, “I have to go for a quarterly check-up in Room No 165 and the doctors who treat me are available on Thursdays alone. When I came on my fixed appointment, I was told that the doctors have gone on strike. Now I have to wait for next Thursday to restart my treatment,” he said.