AYUSH doctors caution to launch cease work strike amid COVID-19 crisis

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Imphal: All Manipur AYUSH Doctors’ Association, pressing for service regularisation of doctors serving under NHM with two other demands, has cautioned to launch cease work strike if Manipur government fails to give positive response by June 22.

The ultimatum was served during a press conference held at Uripok, here on Tuesday.

The association through a press conference held on June 7 demanded the government to increase the salary of AYUSH doctors which has not been increased since the past four years; to provide equal salary with that of Allopathic doctors worker under the same NHM umbrella; and to regularise their service.

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The AYUSH doctors complain that despite of having utilised as frontline warrior since the outbreak of this COVID-19 pandemic the government has failed to fulfil any of their ‘genuine’ demands. They said at present they are working in different postings like community quarantine centres, institutional quarantine centres, sample collection centres and in control rooms indulging in day and night duties.

The AYUSH doctors have been reacting on the recent announcement of  appointing 300 new doctors specially for COVID-19 duty on regular basis ‘by neglecting AYUSH doctors who have been working  selflessly’.

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They complain that AYUSH doctors under NHM are receiving monthly salary of Rs 29,138 while Allopathic (MBBS) doctors under NHM are receiving Rs 57,226 per month.

The High Court of Manipur had also issued an order on April 19 last year directing the government and particularly the State Health Mission Society to ensure that the AYUSH doctors are treated equally with the Allopathic (MBBS) doctors in regard to payment of their salaries within a period of two months, the association said.

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Highlighting the similarity in services of AYUSH doctors and Allopathic doctors the association had appealed chief minister N. Biren Singh through a letter submitted on May 27 to fulfil their demand.

General secretary of the association M. Kennedy told reporters that association has decided to launch cease work strike if the government fails to response positively.

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