Published: 14th December 2020
Interns on COVID duty in Gujarat hospitals protest for stipend hike and allowance
The protesting interns said they would shun all kinds of COVID=19, emergency and non-emergency duties till the government accepts their demands to raise their stipend in writing
Intern doctors from over a dozen government hospitals in Gujarat on Monday started what they claimed was an indefinite protest for a hike in stipend and provision of daily allowance of Rs 1,000 for those on COVID-19 duties. Holding placards, several hundred interns sat on dharna outside their hospitals asking the state government to raise their stipend from the existing Rs 12,800, which they claimed was lower than that of other states, to Rs 20,000, and give those serving in COVID-19 facilities Rs 1,000 as daily allowance.
The agitating interns also want arrears be paid from April and relaxation in bond conditions that govern their services, one of them said. The protesting interns said they would shun all kinds of COVID-19, emergency and non-emergency duties till the government accepts their demands in writing. One of them claimed 2,000 interns across 14 medical colleges in Gujarat had joined the protest, adding that representations made to Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel and the senior health officials were in vain.
"Our primary demand is that our stipend be increased as it is lower than that offered by many other states. We have been working non-stop since April due to the COVID-19 outbreak and our stir is justified," said a protesting intern from BJ Medical College here.