The striking resident doctors of state-run hospitals in Maharashtra have been asked to report to work by 8 pm on Wednesday, or lose six months’ salary.
The 4,000 doctors were given the ultimatum after their strike entered the third day on Wednesday. The doctors from various government and municipal hospitals are demanding security at work place in the wake of a string of attacks on their colleagues. They also want to restrict the number of relatives visiting the patient once admitted.
“The resident doctors should report to duty by today evening or they will lose their salary for six months. The students of post graduate courses who are serving as resident doctors will also face the action,” Maharashtra Medical Education Minister Girish Mahajan told reporters.
“We have all the legal provisions to take such steps… We have assured them of providing enough security and it will be given by month-end. Now, they should resume the duty,” he added.
Their protest mainly affected the medical services of Out-Patient Departments (OPDs) and general wards, a Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD) official said.
He said patients from the economically weaker sections come to government hospitals and the resident doctors should not play with their lives by taking such an extreme stand.
Medical services in 17 government hospitals in Maharashtra, including four in Mumbai, have been affected because of the protest.
The OPDs in these hospitals have been hit hard as only senior doctors are available to attend the patients.
The Bombay High Court had yesterday rapped the medicos while observing that their conduct was “shameful”, and asked them to resign if they don’t want to work. Another plea on the matter will be heard on Thursday.
(With inputs from PTI)